State Senator Jim Banks reconnects with his wife and daughters
after a deployment to Afghanistan (WOWO Photo by Dean Jackson)
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): Jim Banks says he's been preparing for this day for a long time.
Tuesday, the Republican State Senator from Columbia City was welcomed back to Northeast Indiana after an eight-month deployment with the U.S. Navy in Afghanistan.
He was a supply officer with a joint force command supporting the mission of Operation Enduring Freedom.
After shaking hands, wadding through hugs and a few tears, he says his first objective was to spend time enjoying ice cream with his wife, Amanda and three daughters.
Amanda filled her husband's seat in the Indiana Senate while in Afghanistan.
He says the experience opened his eyes to the issues impacting Hoosier service members and says he'll taken that into consideration as Chair in the Senate's Veterans Affairs and Military Committee.
As he was praised for his service, he thanked the community for their concern for him and his family while he was overseas.
In January, backs witnessed the historic transfer of leadership of the mission from the leadership of the U.S Military to Afghan control.