Jackson, MO airman returns home in time for Thanksgiving - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Jackson, MO airman returns home in time for Thanksgiving


An Air Force airman serving in Afghanistan got the chance to spend Thanksgiving with his family.

"I don't even know how to put it in words, I'm so excited," his mom Pamela Riehn said.

It's been her hope that Sam would be home in time for the holidays.

"I'm just so thrilled that he's home," she said. "Especially during the holiday, that just makes it special even more."

However, there was a chance he wouldn't be.

As a member of the Air Force, duty called.

About a year ago he got orders to go to Afghanistan.

Pamela says when he told her the news, it shook her world.

"The first day that he arrived he had texted us and told us that he was OK," she said. "I just thought that he was okay and he arrived, but it meant he was in the middle of that bomb."

But that nervousness stopped the day when she found out, he was coming home.

"I told him we're going to celebrate big when you come home, I can't hardly stand it and I was trying to think of something I could do," Riehn said.

Pamela and the Jackson VFW lined the both sides of the street with American flags leading to her home before he arrived.

According to Joe Wolsey, 400 flags were given by the Jackson American Legion and 200 flags were placed by Cape VFW Post 3838 and it's auxiliaries. 

"There a lot of guys that couldn't be home for the holiday, so I'm thankful to be home," Sam Riehn said.

Pamela says she will treasure every second she has with her son.

"Just to have him here, in my yard, in my house, in his own room, that's not going to happen often, but I'm cherishing every moment that he's home," she said.

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