Daniel Riordan, a U.S. Navy corpsman from Connecticut who's been serving with the 1st Marine Division in Afghanistan, got his boots back on American ground Thursday.
In late September, my nephew was deployed to a forward operating base somewhere near Sangin.
The only battle I'm fighting right now is the battle for WiFi, Dan messaged me on Facebook, shortly after his arrival.
His subsequent dispatches were a mix of bravado (life on the edge suits me better than boredom) and bluntness (it's never-wracking when...I'm the most experienced medical person for 300-something miles), spiced with snark about the "lameness" of the Taliban.
I sent him my column about having to sell the family homestead, and kept him apprised of the struggle of my mother, his grandmother, with Alzheimer's.
Last month, after she died, Dan messaged me from Afghanistan.
I just wish I could have been home.
Now, at long last, he is.
Welcome back, Dan.
Grandmom and the rest of us are so proud of you.