Sergeant 1st Class Scott Constantine returned to Lubbock Tuesday night after his 5th overseas deployment with the United States National Guard. Constantine has served in the Guard for more than 24 years.
Constantine says the experience was quite an eye opener.
"You go from everyone thinking that everyone who turns the corner is a bad guy, then you actually find out that there's people there that want to live in peace," Constantine said.
That's not the only thing Constantine learned. His service taught him some valuable life lessons.
"To see that you can get by without eating McDonalds everyday or Walmart - all the creature comforts - having running lights, carpet, everything - television, you don't need any of that to survive," he said.
Constantine said it was hard to survive without his family. "My grandson, the last time I've seen him, he was fixing to be 2. It was a huge shock," Constantine said. "The things people take for granted on a daily basis... Not being around here, it's definitely hard."
But in his case, fighting for his country is a family tradition. Constantine's daughter is also serving in the National Guard and his son is getting a head start in the service, as the President of the Texas Youth Leadership for the National Guard and Army.
For the past 11 months, Constantine has assisted the Texas Agriculture Development Business team with communication and security support.
Everything from irrigation work to small dam projects, the team worked to help Ghazni province learn to become more business savvy and improve their farming methods.
Constantine says it is the little things that make home irreplaceable.
"It's just the creature comforts at times you miss - a bag of chips - you don't understand how much someone can miss a bag of chips at times," he said.
Constantine began his deployments just after the September 11th, 2001 attacks. He received his second bronze medal during his most recent deployment to Afghanistan.
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