Town of Union, NY (WBNG Binghamton) It was a waiting game two years in the making. A waiting game for United States Army Specialist Mike Sloan to come home.
"It's pretty awesome," said Sloan. "I mean, I've only been home for a couple hours. I'm pretty tired, but, yeah, it's pretty awesome."
For the last two years, the 26-year-old has been operating patriot missiles for the U. S. Army in Korea.
Lining North Street in the Town of Union, dozens of people waved signs and flags to show their support of a man who fought for their freedom.
"I just think it's amazing that they do this for him and for all of the service members they do it for," said Terri Hine, Sloan's cousin. "I think it's wonderful."
Most of the people welcoming Sloan didn't even know him.
"I don't know a lot of these people, really," said Sloan. "It's really cool to have them all here welcoming me back."
One of the first people to get a hug and a picture was his mom, Kathy.
When Sloan was abroad, the two were able to communicate back and forth via Facebook, but this is the first time they have seen each other face-to-face since he was shipped off.
"(I'm) overjoyed," said Kathy Torto, Sloan's mother. "Overjoyed at the awesome support the community gives."
Sloan won't be home for long. In two weeks, he's headed to Fort Hood and then he'll be deployed again in August.
Now that he's home, what's the first thing on Sloan's list? Mexican food.