Hero's welcome for local soldier
PHILADELPHIA - June 22, 2011 (WPVI) -- It was a rousing hero's welcome home for Army infantryman Ryan Green of Willow Grove, Pa. on Wednesday at Philadelphia International Airport.
Green is home on leave after a year of combat in Afghanistan. He was greeted by relatives and an honor guard from two volunteer outfits devoted to welcoming home military personnel.
Green's mother was clearly relieved to have him back home for awhile, safe and sound after months in harm's way.
"I was really worried. He's infantry so I was worried with all the fire-fighting he was involved in, something bad would happen to him," said Mary Green.
The 23-year-old Green told the gaggle of media assembled at the airport that he believes some progress was made during his time on the front lines.
"We're just trying to make it safe for them over there," he said.
After ten years, polls show that Americans are weary of the war. So, too, is the civilian population of Afghanistan. But even with Osama bin Laden dead, a reshuffled al Qaeda survives, largely in Pakistan and other unstable countries like Yemen.
The sense among the welcome home brigade is that President Obama's draw-down sounds great, but the battle is not yet over, over there.
"I don't want it to be like Vietnam where people served and they come home and feel like what they did, didn't serve a purpose," said one veteran.
"As far as going after bin Laden, I think it is "mission accomplished" as far as that goes. Let's get our boys home, get them stateside," said Wayne Seiber of Levittown, Pa.
As for Private Green, he will be here on leave for a month.
"I'll be going back to Germany for about another year, and then change duty stations and redeploy," he told Action News.
Back to Afghanistan, Green was asked? "I imagine," Green said.
philadelphia, pennsylvania, military, afghanistan, philadelphia international airport, u.s. army, local/state, vernon odom
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