Imagine being 20 years old, joining the military, and within months you're standing in the heart of Baghdad in the middle of a war. That's what happened to Adam Thompson.
The young Seabee, who just returned to Gulfport, is thrilled to be back in the states, but is even more thrilled he had the opportunity to serve his country.
"Really, I knew since I was little I wanted to be in the military. My father was in the Army, the 101st airborne."
CECN Adam Thompson chose to keep his feet on the ground, doing the job of his choice while still fulfilling his sense of patriotism. Seabees were the perfect fit.
"I figured serve my country and be an electrician at the same time."
When war broke out, he was ready to go and never looked back.
"There was a couple of times we got nervous when we'd see scuds and what not, but other than that it wasn't so bad."
His mother back in Ohio probably would disagree with that.
"She cried a lot when I called her on the phone and when I wrote her when we were in Iraq... She cried the first time I called her when I got back too."
Thompson was among 200 Seabees who landed in Gulfport Monday night after more than seven months in Middle East. The working and fighting they did was crucial to the war effort.
"We did a lot of bridge work for the Marine Corps. We built bridges so they could get their tanks across. We did road repair for the main supply routes. We did some humanitarian work for schools and hospitals."
Helping in the war effort and making a difference in lives of the Iraqi people makes Thompson proud, and confirms to him that it was in fact a just war.
"At first, I wondered. I mean I knew it had to be done, but when you see the look on people's faces when you get it done, they were happy for us to be there. You liberated a country and you helped them out and it makes you feel good that you're doing them a favor. Hopefully it will turn out all well in the end."