. There's something so American and nostalgic about standing on a Navy pier, watching a ship approaching slowly with it's rails manned by Sailors dressed in their finest whites. The thought alone is enough to bring chills to your skin. Now add a boisterous crowd booming with cheers-- and a group of new moms patiently waiting to introduce their children to Dad for the very first time. That thought, or sight in this case, is more than All-American nostalgia. It's overwhelming. It's joy, anxiety and relief. It's the culmination of the greatest human emotions. To me, it's an unrivaled example of simple and pure love.
I met Erica and her family on a perfect San Diego afternoon. I watched them dote on two-month old Baby M and nervously pass time as the USS Sterett made its way towards us. Erica's smile never faded and I could see the love for her husband radiating from her eyes. She kept them fixed on the Sterett and spotted her Sailor as soon as he made his way onto the pier. Their reunion was amazing-- so amazing that I had to fight for position among several news cameras that chose to document this sweet family's homecoming, too. All it took was one look and I knew Baby M had Daddy wrapped around her finger. It was love at first sight-- of course.
Here is the homecoming story of Baby M, her mommy, and her daddy-- her very first love and her very first hero. Enjoy!