journey home {oplove reunited photographer}

I received an email from Adam, a soldier stationed in Afghanistan, a couple months ago. He heard about Operation Love Reunited volunteer photographers and wanted to surprise his wife by capturing their family’s Homecoming. Adam and his wife, Debbie, have four children. He had left two days after his daughter Natalie’s third birthday and was returning on the exact day of her fourth birthday. I can’t imagine a better birthday gift!

BWI’s International Arrival gate is beautifully decorated with posters welcoming home our troops.

Local volunteers help assemble goody bags for the troops.

Debbie and the kids arrive at the airport with Adam’s mom, Kathy. Debbie didn’t know I would be photographing the reunion but Mama Kathy did and was my go-to person that day. She secretly sent me text messages throughout the day to keep me updated on Adam’s flight schedule.

There was a crowd of people waiting to be reunited with their loved ones. Everyone starred anxiously at the double doors. Each time the doors slid open, those who waited held their breaths in anticipation…there was a quiet feeling of excitement in the air…

Adam was one of the last ones to come out of the door. The kids rushed to hug him. I couldn’t help but tear up as the kids squealed “Daddy!” What a beautiful reunion!

Mom Kathy video taped the homecoming.

Debbie’s friend made these cute little buttons and bows for the kids.

Adam sharing a moment with his daughter. Happy Birthday Natalie!

Welcome Home Adam! Thank-you again for your service and sacrifice for keeping our country free.

OpLove disclaimer: “The photos and other content of this publication do not constitute or imply and endorsement or recommendation by the Department of Defense.”