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BY SUSANNE M. SCHAFER
Associated Press



WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Gov. Nikki Haley and her family joined about 200 friends and family members welcoming home Michael Haley and his 40 fellow soldiers from Afghanistan.



Haley says Michael Haley's return Thursday means the family just got their Christmas gift.



The South Carolina Army National Guard soldiers returned after a 10-month tour helping Afghan farmers as an agricultural support team.



Michael Haley said it feels terrific to be home. He stood for pictures with his 12-year-old son Nalin, 15-year-old daughter Rena and their grandparents.



The soldiers left in January for a month of training in Indiana before being deployed.



The deployment was his first overseas since he joined the Army National Guard as an officer in 2006.



He previously worked as a medical service corps officer and a planning officer.

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