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Mass. Soldiers Welcomed Home From Afghanistan

By Bill Shields, WBZ-TV
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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

WBZ-TV's Bill Shields Bill Shields
Bill Shields is a general assignment reporter for WBZ-TV News. He...
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BOURNE (CBS) — Tears of joy filled the National Guard Armory in Bourne Wednesday as members of the 379th Engineering Battalion came home after a one-year tour of duty in Afghanistan.

“It was a pretty rough situation at times,” said 1st Sgt. Earl Eldridge. “Anytime we went outside the wire, we were at the ready to engage.”

And even though they are engineers and road builders, the 379th took fire on numerous occasions.

In August, not far from their forward operating base, Sgt. Brianne Travers was in one of the trucks, when an RPG came tearing through the vehicle, severely injuring the 31-year-old guardsman from Marshfield. Travers is now at Walter Reed Medical Center, but her mother and mother-in-law were at the armory Wednesday to welcome home her fellow soldiers.

WBZ-TV’s Bill Shields reports.

“She’s recovering, and is in great spirits,” said Debbie Sullivan, “and I think that spirit will see her through.”

This same unit was deployed in Iraq in 2003. But the Afghanistan tour was extremely dangerous.

“I’m just glad to be home,” said Sgt. Fred Sommers. “There were some tense moments over there, but it’s now behind us.”

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