Soldiers come home, at least briefly |

Soldiers come home, at least briefly

In the year since the war on terrorism began in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, local families have watched their sons and daughters rally to the defense of their country.

Now, a year later, two mothers have spoken about their sons who are still waging that war.

Suzie Evans of Glenwood Springs reports son Steven McCrosky may be coming home soon.

McCrosky is a Navy language specialist who speaks Farsi, the language spoken in Iraq and Iran. His movements, and often his whereabouts, are classified, Evans said. She got a “cryptic” e-mail from her son this week that said he’d be picking up his motorcycle in Augusta, Ga., around Oct. 10.

McCrosky, who is now in Bahrain in the Persian Gulf, is based at Fort Gordon in Augusta.

“I assume he’s coming home,” she said.

McCrosky went to the Persian Gulf in January and came home in May to see his younger stepbrother graduate from high school. By Evans’ count he’s been overseas for about 120 days, a normal tour of duty.

“It doesn’t always work that way. If we go to war with Iraq, he won’t be coming home,” she said.

McCrosky has had a stellar career in the Navy thus far. Graduating first in his class from basic training in San Diego, he was given his choice of assignments. He chose the Defense Language School in Monterey, Calif. where he first learned Vietnamese and Thai.

Although he was in school during the Gulf War he was assigned to the American embassy in Thailand.

Another local couple, Pat and George Hunter of Glenwood Springs, said their son Mark, who is a commander in the Navy, is already in his home port of Norfolk, Va.

Hunter was recently promoted to the rank of commander and now serves as the operations officer on the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt, his mother, Pat, said.

“It’s in for maintenance work before it goes out on its next assignment,” she said.

Mark Hunter was recently honored at the annual Tailhook convention of Naval aviators in Reno, Nev., for a thousand landings on an aircraft carrier, Pat Hunter said.

The Roosevelt was one of the first U.S. ships to engage in the Afghan war and Hunter shipped out on her.

It was deployed on Sept. 19, 2001, Pat Hunter said. It returned to the United States in March.

“They all came back safely. It doesn’t seem that it was a year ago,” she said.

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