National hero comes home to Augusta

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News 12 First at Five, October 12, 2007

AUGUSTA, Ga. - As a Helicopter Crew Chief for the United States Army, Specialist Stanford "Skip" Horne has been serving our country in Iraq for the past six months. Now he's home and ready to surprise his mom.

"That's the biggest thing you miss over there is your family. What keeps you going is thoughts of them. You don't know what's going to happen when you come home and there's no greater feeling than being reunited with them," says Horne.

News 12 went with Skip, his wife and his 8-year-old daughter to surprise Skip's mom, Marsha Altvater, a third grade teacher for 20 years at Glenn Hills Elementary School.

Ms. Altvater was so surprised she burst into tears as her embraced her son.

"I am so grateful that he's back safely, just for a little while and I thank God," says Skip's mom.

8-year-old Ariel Horne is looking forward to spending time with her Dad,"We're going to go to the Jacksonville zoo," she said.

Skip says he's ready for the zoo and he's glad he could put a smile on his Mom's face.

"I've been waiting to see her for a long time. I know she worries about me more than anybody else. So, to see me come home safely is her biggest dream and as long as I'm safe she's happy."

Welcome home, Specialist Horne.

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