Combat Training Soldier Home In East Texas - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

12/25/04-Longview

Combat Training Soldier Home In East Texas

       An east Texas soldier, who trains soldiers who will soon go to Iraq, is getting a chance to see his family and be with a son he hasn't seen in 6 months. Among hugs and happy faces of this Christmas day celebration, Sgt. Joe Turner has come home from training duty in Fort Campbell.

    "Theres nothing a soldier misses more than family time and family cooking, home cooking you can't beat it" says Turner.

      More important among the fun and loving atmosphere of his extended family, he got to see his son for the first time in 6 months.

     "For a while when he was in Iraq i was really depressed cause i didn't get to see him and really needed that relationship and there was an empty void there of not really having my dad you know" says 15 year old son Joseph Turner junior.

         But this holiday is bittersweet, after serving a year in Iraq, Turner now trains the men who will soon be going over there.

     "Well they're making the sacrifices they're wearing the uniform, it's there turn and i want to make sure they have the opportunity or chance to come home. A couple of days ago, dining facility had a suicide bomber one of my best friends was in there , i don't know if he made it yet, that makes 3 over the last year that got seriously injured" Turner says.

     He takes solace in a supportive family, and was treated to something special, a song of tribute composed and performed by his son. Turner will leave the army this year to go into ministry, and hopes to re-enter the army as a chaplain. Bob Hallmark reporting.

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