Two ships returning to Mayport

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – More than 4,000 military families will share hugs and kisses this morning when two ships return to Mayport.
The USS Iwo Jima and USS Fort McHenry have been on a 7-month deployment on a crucial mission in the Middle East.

To make things even more exciting, the homecoming comes one day after yesterday's homecoming of the USS New York that brought home more than 360 sailors.

The USS Iwo Jima is one of the ships returning home Monday, with more than 4,000 sailors returning home to their families. The USS Iwo Jima and the USS Fort McHenry completed a 7 month deployment to support security cooperation and to provide crisis response, humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and combat capabilities.

The USS New York's 8-month deployment involved strengthened ties between the U.S. and other nations including Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Bahrain, and France. They also worked on maritime security operations. Thousands of family members welcomed their loved ones home, Sunday, after eight long months.

"This is our first deployment. We have a 4-year-old son name Christopher and we have a new addition named Lillian. This is the first time that she will be meeting her dad. I'm glad to have him home. Our family's complete," said Kristina Casavant, whose husband returned from overseas on Sunday.

The USS Iwo Jima and USS Fort McHenry will return to Mayport this morning. We will be here for the exciting homecoming and will continue to bring you coverage on air and on News4Jax.com.