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It was another one of those joyously happy nights that I am privileged to be a part of… No matter how many times I see a homecoming, each time I feel like I’m seeing it all for the first time.

Months of waiting came down to one beautiful moment, a couple reunited after a long separation. And that day had finally arrived! The sun was setting over the hangar as family and friends stood by with high hopes. With each passing minute anticipation blossomed until everyone was so excited that they couldn’t stand still. Smiles were on everyone’s faces, counting the moments until the airlift for VFA-2 would finally touch down.

Evening passed into night with everyone holding onto memories, remembering how difficult it had been to be away from their loved ones for so long. Then homecoming airlift bringing the Sailors back to their families was on the ground. One by one the men filed out of the plane and onto the tarmac. The ladies were craning their necks trying to get the first glimpse of the men they had been waiting for.

Totally off topic, but you all know I LOVE sexy shoes, and I couldn’t resist these beauties! Denisse looked like a star in these hot little black stilettos!

One of the last ones off the plane, Joel was finally on the ground… Denisse had waited patiently for too long… She looked at me and cried “He’s here!”

From the moment Joel saw her, he never took his eyes off her… it was that moment you can see just how in love two people are… He ran to her, dropped his bags, and pulled her into his arms in an embrace that said he never wanted to let go again. It seemed that the moment couldn’t have been more perfect, until…

…this happened! Just like the famous kiss in Times Square when it was announced that the war was finally over, the handsome military man dipped his girl and kissed her, a symbol of pure happiness.

Everyone was excited for the happy couple. Reunions such as this were happening all over the tarmac, sounds of laughter and excitement filled the air. And for these two, it was truly a night to remember.

Congrats and welcome home Joel!!!!!

• Michaela Stuart Photography • WebsiteFacebookEmail