250 sailors aboard USS Taylor welcomed home to Mayport

Sailors return from 7-month deployment patrolling off African coast

Published On: Sep 10 2012 06:03:52 AM EDT   Updated On: Sep 10 2012 11:43:14 AM EDT
USS Taylor families
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

The USS Taylor and about 250 sailors returned to Naval Station on Mayport Monday morning after a seven-month deployment.

"They were gone for seven months patrolling around the horn of Africa, Somali basin, certainly conducting some piracy operations, maritime security operations with foreign navies. It's a constant mode of training. I can tell you last night, probably wasn't any sleep on the ship. Everybody's excited to reunite with their families," said Bill Austin with Naval Station Mayport.

SLIDESHOW: Homecoming photos

The deployment was a great success, according to Austin.  The ship docked about 8:15 a.m., but families are begin lining up much earlier.

"I go to all these homecomings and it's always something different but one thing that remains the same, there's always a lot of excitement in the air. As you can imagine, seven months is a long time, so there's a lot of happy folks out here today waiting for their loved ones to return from sea," Austin said.