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Two ships return home to Mayport in time for the holidays

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Updated: 12/23/2013 8:46 pm
The sailors arrived with the sounds of whistles and hundreds of friends and family members waiting just for them.

"It's been hard. I'm 7 and 1/2 months pregnant so I've been pregnant the time he's been gone. It's been rough," said wife Shamyiah Underwood.

Underwood was lucky enough to get the first kiss. Her husband was aboard the USS DeWert, a ship that participated in maritime security operations.

An hour later, The USS The Sullivans made its way into Mayport, too.

"It's my first deployment and his first deployment and our first homecoming," said girlfriend Kimberly Geiner.

Geiner's boyfriend of more than five years was aboard The USS The Sullivans, which also participated in maritime security operations.

As the sailors came bearing gifts, some family members said the service members themselves were the best gifts of all.

"Very perfect timing, right before Christmas as well," said Underwood.

The USS DeWert will be decommissioned in April 2014.

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