Families welcome soldiers home from Qatar

Local News

After serving ten months overseas, members of the Virginia National Guard have returned home.

Soldiers from the 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team arrived at Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport Saturday afternoon, greeted by dozens of family members and friends.

“I can’t wait to just hug him,” said Tanya Hoy, who was waiting near the tarmac Saturday. 

Hoy said she knows the heartache of deployments and the happiness of homecomings. Her husband was an Air Force pilot and was sent to Desert Storm. Her father served in the Army in Vietnam.

“I know how much he’s going to mature over these ten months ’cause I remember my first deployment,” said Brian Hoy, Tanya’s husband.

“I’ve been very proud of him,” said Ron Johnson, Tanya’s father. “He’s a very good kid, very dedicated.”

But Tanya Hoy admits it’s different when it’s your son.

“I’m honestly overwhelmed,” Tanya Hoy said. “The fact that he’s finally here – it’s a completely different animal when it’s your child.”

Ian Hoy said he is happy to have his older brother back in the house.

“He’s going to help me out with baseball, going to do a lot of stuff together, do anything he wants to do,” Ian Hoy said.

“Kind of overwhelmed I guess,” said soldier Nicholas Hoy. “I really don’t know what else to say.”

Nicholas Hoy said he is excited to get back home after ten months in Qatar. He said he is hoping to eventually become an officer, but for now, he is happy to be able to spend time with family and friends.

“Just kind of relax, enjoy a small, little vacation and try to get back to school,” Nicholas Hoy said, adding that he plans to finish his degree in history at Virginia Tech.

“I don’t think I’ll let him out of my sight for a couple days,” Tanya Hoy said. “Just [spend] as much quality time as we possibly can with him.”

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