Navy Sailor Returns Home in Time for the Holidays

Local News

After an 8-month deployment along the Arabian Gulf, U.S. Navy sailor, Joel Wilcox finally returns to the Western Slope.

Following the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, Joel Wilcox’s wife, Kitt, says she was unsure whether or not Joel would be returning home anytime soon. 

“At first its like– well– they say, ‘He is coming home on November 17th,’ but I’ll believe it when it happens,” Kitt Wilcox said.

Despite months of uncertainty, the family continued to have high hopes that they would see their hero once again.

“We had two great big jars, and I think we started out with 243– so there’s one bead for everyday that he was going to be gone. And so we would take the beads and put them into the emptier jar, but towards the end we just chucked the beads and we’re like, ‘Four more days,” Wilcox said.

Finally on Tuesday night, Patriot Guard Riders, along with Kitt and their two children, gathered at Grand Junction Regional Airport with flags of honor and open arms to give Joel warm welcome home.

“It’s just an amazing feeling,” Wilcox said. “It’s just like falling in love all over again.”

Although Joel will only be here for a few weeks, the Wilcox family says they are relieved to have their husband and father home just in time for the holidays.



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