200 Marines return to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar after yearlong deployment

SAN DIEGO - About 200 members of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing returned to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar Monday following a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The Marines arrived at the northern San Diego military base about 8 a.m. and were welcomed by family and friends in a flight-line homecoming ceremony.

Debbie Fortney could not help but cry as she held her Marine daughter. She said the homecoming was a wonderful day, second only to the day she had her daughter, 20 years ago.

"It's good to have her in my arms again," Fortney said. "She's my life."

Pfc. Breana Fortney, who was fresh off the flight from Afghanistan, grabbed her mom tightly, gave her a kiss and said, "Love you mama."

Her dad, John, said she is his baby, but fought back tears as he spoke of how proud he is.

"I'm very glad that she's back in country," he said of a country that is safer because of his little girl.

During the tour of duty, the personnel provided close air support and transportation for ground troops, according to MCAS Miramar's public affairs office.

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