East Texas Soldier Welcomed Home From Iraq - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

1/17/04 - Mineola

East Texas Soldier Welcomed Home From Iraq

Cheryl and Abraham Burciaga still act like newlyweds. That's understandable since the couple only lived together for three months before Abraham was deployed to Iraq. Cheryl says it's nice to have him home.

"I was pretty excited," she said. "I didn't expect it to happen I mean he had mentioned that he might get to come home in January but I didn't get my hopes up because there were a lot of them that said they were going to get to come home and it ended up being a later date."

The months spent waiting for this day were hard. Abraham says phone calls were nice, but they were not the same.

"I was happy, but a while it would hit me that it wasn't the same as being with her," he said. "You don't realize how much you miss them until you you final get to see them."

The time was especially hard on Abraham's mother, Teresa. As time went by her worrying only grew.

"It was so hard to me," she said. "I've been seeing too many things on the TV, too many people crying."
"I always worry. I always got his picture in front of my TV and I pray. Every time I see his picture I cry."

Wearing an anti-Saddam T-shirt, Abraham talks positively about the war, but questions remain.

"I'm glad that we went over there but when you hear about people getting shot in helicopters you just wonder sometimes if we made the right choice."

Around friends and family that worrying seems to fade away. But for Cheryl there is still some time to go.

"It is a relief everybody we're all glad that we get to spend time with him but he's gonna be gone for another two months and that's another two months that we're gonna have to wait and make sure he's o.k."

Abraham is set to go back to Iraq at the end of the month. While he's not sure exactly what he'll be doing, the military has told him he'll return to Fort Sill, Oklahoma by summer. From there he and Cheryl hope to move back in together while Abraham serves the last two years of his military service.

Chris Gibson, reporting

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