The soldier’s homecoming was unannounced.
No loved ones at the airport with homemade signs and balloons.
No TV camera crews.
Nothing like that.
Rather, Staff Sgt. Kevin Haddon’s welcome home after a long flight from Afghanistan and a long taxi ride from McGuire Air Force Base came in the emotional embrace of his grieving grandmother in South Jersey.
Kevin is my nephew and served with Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne).
Marjorie Haddon is his paternal grandmother, who just lost her husband. Robert Haddon was 86.
A wonderful couple, they were married 63 years.
Since my dad had passed when Kevin’s mother, my sister Maureen, was a teenager, Bob Haddon was the only grandfather he knew.
A good man.
His health had deteriorated lately, and being concerned for their oldest grandson in Afghanistan probably didn’t help.
We all were.
Read more Sunday in Mannix About Manatee on Bradenton.com.