Army Town Residents Worry, Rejoice

A world-class capture a world away was celebrated like a victory for the home team.

"It was like he had won the lottery," says Kelly Wommack, of her husband Sgt. Joey Wommack, who was there when Saddam was pulled out of hiding.

"Just being there doing the missions was enough, but I don't think there's anything in our life that will ever top that," he says. "It's amazing."

"You know there are lot of unsung hero's in the military, (and) we'll probably never hear about some of them," says Toschia Moffett, whose husband is also stationed in Iraq.

Moffett mailed personal items, like food, to soldiers in the 4th Infantry Division in Iraq.

And, as CBS News Correspondent Bob McNamara reports, Dayna Maravich, like other spouses whose husbands are stationed in Iraq, ships care packages. She senses a seismic shift among their soldiers at war now.

"They know there's still danger, but for morale, he said soldiers were high-fiving, and you know, like yes, yes, but they have a long way to go," she says.

In Fort Hood, churches rejoiced and pawnshops echoed the cheers.

"A lot of relief and an overall good feeling," says pawnbroker Fred Ohnesorge.

It is not forgotten that Fort Hood has paid heavily in the hunt for Saddam. Forty soldiers from the base have died in Iraq, while 30 have been killed in action from the 4th Infantry alone. At a time when support for the war was being questioned, Col. James Hickey, led the operation that found Saddam.

"It's a terrific Christmas present," says Maureen Hickey. "Couldn't ask for a better one."

Hickey says families worried and waiting for husbands and wives to return months from now have hope again.

"It's a huge boost for the spouses who are looking at an upcoming Christmas season that was somewhat depressing," says Hickey. "This is a boost that's going to put them over and get them through that period here."

Today, 20,000 more troops are rehearsing for their mission in Iraq, and when they leave thousands of new yellow ribbons will go up in an Army town so familiar with war.
  • Glenn Minnis

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