Minnesota National Guard soldiers from Crookston & TRF return home

FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) Fifty-two Minnesota National Guard soldiers from Crookston and Thief River Falls return home from the Middle East. Company B of the Second Combined Arms Battalion of the 136th infantry were greeted by family at Hector International Airport in Fargo.

The soldiers were deployed to several locations throughout the Middle East as it is rare for soldiers to be stationed at only one place for an extended time. Soldiers say they are relieved to return home where they can spend their time with friends and family while adjusting their internal clocks.

“Time changes, have to do with coming home and, just, the communication with family. Kinda having a date set in mind and then it would get changed. Just that frustration of, never….trying to prepare for one thing and it’s just changing,” says Douglas Aas of the Minnesota National Guard.

Soldiers were stationed in countries such as Afghanistan, Syria and Jordan.

“Couple guys went to Jordan and spent some time there, then we came back and the whole company got spun out to Afghanistan, then the group went to Saudi and then another portion of us went to Syria so kind of spread out,” said Aas.

Despite all of the soldiers being from Minnesota, the change in climate is sudden as they experienced mostly warmer temperatures. Most of them are just grateful to return to their homeland. They say the cold is home to them.

“It’s a great feeling, it’s been a long time coming. For a while there delay after delay trying to get here and now we’re finally here, with the cold welcoming us,” said Aas.

After meeting loved ones at Hector International Airport, soldiers loaded the bus and returned to their homes in Crookston and Thief River Falls, Minnesota.