- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 9, 2014

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) - About 40 members of the Illinois Air National Guard have returned home after serving in southwestern Asia.

The 182nd Airlift Wing members arrived Tuesday in Peoria, greeted by family and friends. The Journal Star reports (http://bit.ly/VXB6Um ) the airmen served with the 379th Air Expeditionary Wing, flying 237 missions, carrying more than 2,300 passengers, 51 patients and more than 700 tons of cargo.

One airman, Luke Rosenbloom, held his son Jaxson and said “it’s great to be back.” The little boy was wearing a flight suit, just like his father. Rosenbloom said his son has “grown a lot.”

Another little boy, Beckam Trunk, held a sign that read “Get out of my way, I get my daddy back today.”

Master Sgt. Doug Mattsey brought his tuba to welcome the airmen home.

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Information from: Journal Star, http://pjstar.com