Soldiers return home from Iraq following important job

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SALT LAKE CITY -- A small group of soldiers returned home to Utah Thursday. Their job is one not often talked about in the news, but it's one that is very important to fellow soldiers.

Family and friends couldn't wait to see their loved ones. For the past year, they've sent letters, pictures, care packages. Thursday morning they got hugs and kisses -- way better than anything they could get in the mail.

"[I'm] pretty emotional; just glad to have her on home ground now," said Jean Ewell.

Ewell's granddaughter, Chelsey Nelson, is one of eight Army reservists from the 478th Human Resource Company who were serving in Iraq. The group is made of men and women from Utah and Montana. Tthey managed all postal platoons throughout the area.

"To make sure the care packages and mail gets moved forward and delivered if it's on their base," explained Commander Bart Stevens. "Mail is a morale factor. If it doesn't flow, there gets to be issues."

But there were no issues with the 478th. Their commander says they did their job efficiently and professionally.

For the next few months, they don't have to think about letters or delivering packages.

"It's so good to be home and to be able to see family. It's been a long time," Nelson said.

There is a chance some of the soldiers, like Nelson, could be deployed again. She signed up for another three years with the Army Reserve.

"If they call her gain, she is ready to go and we support her in all she does," Ewell said.

But for now, Nelson just wants to be home.

"I just want to go home and be with my family and relax," Nelson said.

This was the second deployment for Nelson, and many others in her company. Nelson served a year in Kuwait before this deployment.



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