FORT DRUM, N.Y. -- A large crowd gathered in a hangar at Wheeler-Sack Army Airfield, watching a video of Soldiers exiting an aircraft. The crowd sat patiently as time passed, because they knew that soon they would embrace their loved ones once again.

Soldiers assigned to 7th Engineer Battalion, 10th Sustainment Brigade, 10th Mountain Division (LI), were greeted by friends and Family Members on Monday at Wheeler-Sack Army Airfield after a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The crowd of hundreds was visibly excited as they cheered and applauded when some 200 Soldiers made their way into one of the airfield hangars.

Col. (P) Walter E. Piatt, 10th Mountain Division (LI) commanding general -- support, welcomed the Soldiers and thanked the friends and Families who supported the engineers during their deployment. He praised the Soldiers for their hard work and dedication, and then he ordered for them to be dismissed.

Some people in the crowd ran and jumped into their Soldier's arms. Tears of joy were shed, and children were reunited with their parents.

Spc. Kanitra Blount, a human resource specialist assigned to 10th Special Troops Battalion, said she is looking forward to spending quality time with her husband and going shopping.

"I'm pretty anxious," Blount said. "I'm happy he made it back safe."

The engineers accomplished their mission in Afghanistan only to return to a mission that some might say is of greater importance: reuniting with their loved ones. They will join the more than 100 Soldiers who arrived Friday to begin reintegrating back to life at Fort Drum.