PELHAM, Ala. (WIAT)- It’s a short drive from I-65 to the Pelham National Guard Armory. That small stretch of road, however, re-unites families from across the world. Families, like the Hendersons. “We are so proud of him and everything that they’ve done, and we’re just glad to have him home,” says Ashley Henderson, speaking of her husband, Corp. Christopher Henderson. Corp. Henderson is part of the 167th Alabama National Guard, which just completed a tour that included nine months in Afghanistan.
The Henderson family has four children, and they awaited their fathers arrival home with signs, American flags, and promises! “I’m going to give him a hundred kisses and hugs,” said his daughter Baleigh. You hear the troops long before you see them. The buses carrying the soldiers home is escorted by a motorcycle brigade, and then there’s the rampant cheering from their loved ones.
The 167th Alabama National Guard is one of three companies returning to central Alabama, joining groups in Cullman and Sylacauga.
The Henderson children rushed to their father as soon as they saw him, and he held them in a strong embrace for several minutes. “He’s gotten me through a lot,” says Ashley, taking the sight in and awaiting her turn to properly welcome Corp. Henderson. ”It was hard with him not being here.”