Family welcomes Marine home from Iraq

May 21, 2008 3:59:53 PM PDT
It was a day eight months in the making for a Wilmington, Delaware family. Marine second lieutenant Gregory Collins is home from Iraq. His family says they couldn't be more proud. Members of the Collins family say it's hard to describe what it's like having a loved one in the war zone.

"It's just the worry, the everyday worry. You think 'what's he doing?' every day," said Gregory's sister Julie.

But they admit it's also hard to describe the joy when they come home.

Gregory Collins spent the last eight months in Fallujah.

And he says that while coming home is the most rewarding thing, seeing things turn around in Fallujah over the past year felt pretty good as well.

"My platoon worked with the community and the police. Things are a lot better, a lot safer, so I could come home with a lot of good stories," said Collins on his return to Philadelphia International Airport on Wednesday.

The 24-year old Collins also says the worst thing about where he was stationed was being partnered with a bunch of New York sports fans.

"During the football season a lot of them were rooting for the Giants, so there was a lot of back and forth about that."

All kidding aside, Lt. Collins says he's proud of the men he worked with over in Iraq. But nobody is prouder than Greg's dad.

"He led a group of 35 men, and we're very glad that all of them came back home safely," said Gregory's father David Collins.

Gregory will be home for a month then he'll return to his platoon in California, where he'll remain until his redeployment overseas in January.