A big welcome home
To U.S. Marine Willard Truckenmiller. The Florida resident just hasn't come back from a tour in Iraq, but is about to become a new father. Congratulations to Willard and his wife Elaine. God bless this family.
Note- The Fort Myers News-Press article didn't mention Truckenmiller's rank. We can call the Florida MSM absent minded now too.
Linked to- Bright & Early, Bullwinkle Blog,
U.S. Marine Willard Truckenmiller arrived Thursday back in Fort Myers after a six-month stint in Iraq.
But his wife, Elaine, wasn’t jumping for joy at the airport.
Nine months pregnant and only six days from her due date, she was just glad baby stayed put until daddy arrived home. Ayla Grace will be the couple’s first child.
After watching U.S. Airways flight 1697 pull into the D concourse Thursday evening, Elaine could finally breath a sigh of relief Willard would be joining her next week at HealthPark Medical Center — and not just by telephone.
“I was kind of nervous about it,” Elaine said about going into labor early.
The childhood friends turned boyfriend/girlfriend turned husband/wife could only chat on the phone once a week while Willard was in Iraq. Elaine, 21, a 2003 graduate of Riverdale High, sent pictures through e-mail so Willard could chart the baby’s growth.
Willard, 22, a 2003 Lehigh Senior High graduate, worked for two years as a plumber before enlisting in the Marines. He served as a combat security officer in Iraq, and said “every time you go outside of the wire,” a solder’s life is in danger. Yet, that wasn’t his only worry.
“Not only do you think about stuff going on over there, but you’ve got to think about everybody back here, especially her,” he said.
The couple first met in elementary school, but didn’t start dating until just a few years ago. They married in August 2005, but one month later, Willard received his marching orders. When they learned a few months later Elaine was pregnant, it become all that much tougher to say goodbye in March.
Elaine said she’s had a relatively easy pregnancy, but has been leaning on family down the home stretch.
Willard has been granted both paternity time and two-weeks of leave time, and doesn’t report to Camp Lejeune in North Carolina until Oct. 21.
He’s hoping to start training with the Marines’ canine unit, and parlay that experience into a job as a K-9 officer with a law-enforcement agency once his five-year service ends.