Saturday, March 19, 2011


After six months in Afghanistan, over twenty-six hours of flying, a twelve hour delay in Romania and an unknown amount of unhealthy in-flight meals, we finally landed at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.  We had a warm welcome from family and friends, the 1st Marine Division Marine Band and another important person...our Armor.  After having to account for our 9mm Beretta's and M-4 / M-16's twenty-four/seven, handing our weapons over to him was one of the highlights of our journey home.

Here's a brief snapshot of our adventure.

MASS-3's end-of-tour BBQ

During our week of joblessness, the Morale, Welfare and Recreation centers were our best friends.  The monitors weren't the biggest, but given our location, they were just as good to us as any fifty to a hundred inch monitor.

Verifying weapons serial numbers before leaving country

Loading our baggage onto the 7-ton

With my Traveler Escape guitar aboard a C-17 Globemaster in preparation for our flight to Manas, Kyrgyzstan. 
Manas, Kyrgyzstan - I wonder if anyone caught a cold during our travels?  Between Afghanistan, Manas, Romania, Ireland, Main, Texas and San Diego, we experienced at least three drastic climate changes.
Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.  Jillian had professional signs made for my past combat deployments, but these priceless signs top the cake.  There were no pets allowed on the flightline, so Jillian came up with the next best thing.
Pepper and Olive

Where's the first place one goes to eat after a deployment to Afghanistan?  Why Beach Break Cafe in Oceanside, California for their Banana Crunch French Toast.  I got home at 2 a.m. and was having my French Toast at 10 a.m.  Home at last...

Jillian, thank you so very much for your support and everything you've done for the family during this and past deployments!  RJRJRJRJRJ

Also, thank you to all my friends and followers of this blog.  Your kind words of support truly helped to get me through this deployment. 

Semper Fidelis!!


  1. Welcome home, and thank you for your service!

  2. WELCOME HOME JOHN! Now tell your wife to get off WWF and go love up on you!!

  3. Welcome home! Will we be seeing you at Viva?

  4. Welcome back, any chance we will see you in Vegas?


  5. Nice post John, glad you made it home safely. Hopefully we'll see you at VLV!

  6. Great post! Welcome Home! The first song the Marine Corps Band played while we waited was "When Johnny Comes Marching Home"!

  7. Great to know you safe and at home with your lovely wife.

  8. THANK YOU Everyone!! It's great to be back!