We woke up early again and headed to the base. We arrived on base and were bussed to the Parade Grounds where we waited for our Airmen. Finally, the came out and the ceremonies began. The flights marched across the bomb run (a long concrete path in front of the bleachers) and were introduced. My husband's flight earned Honor Flight status, for earning the most points of all flights in his graduation week group. Oh yeah, talk about one proud wifey!!
The Airmen recited the Air Force Oath of Enlistment as well as the Airman's Creed before being 'released' to their families. They were released the same as they were on day one...they stood at attention and the families were able to come up and 'tap them out' (touching them). I wore a huge hat so that Matt would be able to see us in the audience. I forgot to take it off before hugging him and kind of knocked him in the head with it...oops!
We then we able to go and see where Matt lived for the past eight weeks. We got to see their tiny beds and impersonal living quarters. We also got to meet his Training Instructor, who Matt has the utmost respect for and only good things to say about.
We got our pins from Matt. I got a spouse's pin and my mother-in-law and mother each got a parents' pin. We wore them quite proudly everywhere we went!
We then went and took some pictures in front of a HUGE flag at a museum on base.
|Matt's Mom, Me, Matt, My Mom and My Dad|
Finally, we got to take Matt OFF BASE! For eight weeks he hadn't been out of those gates. We went to Cracker Barrell first and got my man some food. We then just spend time hanging out at the hotel and snacking on Oreos, Dr. Pepper and Spicy Nacho Doritos.
It was so wonderful just to sit next to my husband and be able to hug him whenever I wanted to. They were not allowed any public display of affection while in uniform, in public so I couldn't even hold his hand while walking next to him. Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining, I respect the rules set...I don't always have to like them, though! Ha ha! We stopped by Starbucks before heading back to drop Matt off at the base. It was hard to believe that our trip was already half way over...though, the wait was SO worth it.