Long wait finally over for family

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 9, 2006

The long wait is finally over.

Specialist Eric Bagents of the 3/117th Field Artillery Battalion out of Troy returned home to the National Guard unit Tuesday afternoon.

Bagents' unit was deployed Nov. 7, 2004.

According to his mother, Terrie Bagents of Rutledge, her son's unit was first sent to Camp Shelby in Miss., and then left Camp Shelby for Iraq on Feb. 5, 2005.

&#8220He was stationed in Taji in Iraq,” she said. &#8220And, he turned 21 while he was over there. We'll just be glad to get him home.”

Bagents joined the Troy National Guard unit when he was a junior in high school. He is a 2003 Luverne High School graduate.

His wife, Allison Hodge Bagents, is also a 2003 Luverne High School graduate. The couple got married on Feb. 3, 2004. They currently reside in Rutledge.

&#8220We've been keeping in touch with him through letters and on the Internet,” Terrie Bagents said. &#8220And, we've used phone cards. The best thing, however, was when we got to see Eric using a web cam this past Christmas.”

Allison Bagents agrees that the whole ordeal has been &#8220very stressful.”

&#8220I'm just so glad he's home,” she said. &#8220The absence of his presence has been the worst thing. I really don't think it'll take much to get things back to normal.”

Bagents' parents are Ricky and Terrie Bagents of Rutledge. He has one sister, Jamie Finlayson, of Millbrook, and one step-brother, Ryan Bagents of Rutledge.

Allison Bagents' parents are Tony and Pam Hodge of Luverne.