Airmen return from Middle East just in time for holidays

Image 1 of 11

A KC-135 aircraft landed at MacDill Air Force Base on Friday with a welcome sight for some military families in the Bay Area: After months of waiting, their loved ones are home for the holidays.

The air crew that came home Friday was deployed to the Middle East.

The returning crew landed at the base but couldn't get off the plane right away, since they arrived directly from the Middle East. They had to go through a customs check. That meant a little more of a wait for those families who were eager for hugs.

Some made 'welcome home' signs, anticipating the moment they would all be together again.

All of those coming home were excited to reunite, but for some like Major Jonathan Fernandez, the holidays are an especially precious time.

"It's definitely special to be able to share it with them. It is the season to be with family and to be sharing with everybody, just enjoying the happiness that they bring you. It means a lot, it means being able to share, being able to celebrate, just being with family," Frenandez said.

Major Fernandez says this is the first time he's been away since his son was old enough to talk and he's eager to catch up on all he missed.

The whole ar crew is home for Christmas and they say they're glad to be able to spend the holiday with their families.

But it's only possible because others are serving our country overseas.