'Raider Nation' comes home
January 28, 2011
FORT RILEY, Kan. - When asked if she was happy to have her daddy home, 3-year-old Danaya McGlone answered with a soft and sweet, but blunt, "yes."
Danaya and her 5-year-old sister, Myak, along with their grandmother, Tina Baer, and great-grandmother, Claudia DeCrousey, traveled from Indianapolis to welcome home the girls' father, Spc. Brock McGlone, one of more than 60 returning Soldiers from the 2nd Platoon, 977th Military Police Company, 97th Military Police Battalion, Jan. 18 during a redeployment ceremony in Building 88312 on Custer Hill.
"A year's long enough. I don't know how people do it for two years," Baer said. "It was rough though, but I turned him over to God in the beginning and let him go."
Internet and texting were the key forms of communication during the yearlong deployment for the Family to stay in touch.
"It was tough, but I just tried to call (the girls) every night - tried to webcam when we could," Brock McGlone said.
The Soldier's Family waited nearly two days to welcome him home.
"I understand I am the only thing standing between you and your Soldiers," said Lt. Col. Michael Mathews, 97th MP Bn. commander, to the awaiting Families.
During Mathews' brief speech, he thanked the Families for their support.
"Unassuming, unwavering and unquestionably loyal, your behind-the-scenes efforts made a positive difference," he said.
During the yearlong deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, the unit's mission was focused on detainee operations.
"For the last year, you provided commanders in theater with unequaled professional support, conducting detention operations and safeguarding the very people trying to destabilize the nation of Afghanistan," Mathews said. "A tactical mission with the potential for strategic effects, you accomplished it with distinction."
At the end of their mission, the Soldiers were replaced by fellow comrades - members of the 1st Platoon, 977th MP Co., 97th MP Bn.
Concluding his speech, Mathews thanked Soldiers for answering their nation's call.
"After a year deployed to Afghanistan, you are now combat veterans, a title worn by relatively few in our nation," he said.
With that, the Soldiers were dismissed to once again embrace their Family members.