A hero's welcome: Troops greeted by family members as they come home for holidays

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More than 100 soldiers returned home for the holidays from missions in the Middle East.

Hundreds of family members greeted the members of the 1-114th Infantry Bravo Company Thursday morning inside the National Guard Armory Gymnasium.

The soldiers left their families in January, first for a stop in El Paso before getting deployed for nine months in Qatar on several peace-keeping missions in the Middle East.

For many of the soldiers, it was their first deployment and their first time away from family and friends.

Some families, such as the Jensons, welcomed home both of their sons who deployed together halfway around the world.

Fire Chief Steven Hadgkiss welcomed back Anthony Matos Jr., a fellow volunteer. He says he admires Matos for working as both a first responder and a soldier.

The New Jersey National Guard deployed around 2,000 soldiers in 2019, and roughly half of them will return home in time for the holidays.

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