William Perkins is getting back in the swing of things with his family after more than a year on the battlefront in Iraq.
"120 missions, 13,000 miles in 9 months," said Perkins.
Perkins' 1203rd Engineer Battalion with the Alabama Army National Guard came back early Sunday morning.
"I'm extremely tired," he said.
But not so tired to sit and take it all in for the first time. Perkins was in charge of personal security detail, simply meaning it was his responsibility to make sure dignitaries got from point A to point B safely. Some nervous moments in Iraq where time seemed to stand still for William Perkins.
"Several times we came under fire but using our training we were able to get out without firing back," Perkins said.
Just 72 hours ago Perkins was walking and guarding a foreign land. Today he is back home, walking his Prattville neighborhood where neighbors said 'Welcome Home' with American flags on both sides of the street and huge signs at the entrance to Riverchase subdivision.
"That's when I realized how proud I was to be an American," said Perkins.
Proud and humbled considering what his eyes had seen for more than a year.
"No running water. No electricity. The kids fight over soccer balls than food. On average they get a meal twice a week," said Perkins.
A full time soldier for 15 months. Now private citizen until he goes back to his other career, a job that's just as dangerous but just as fulfilling; wearing the badge as a Montgomery Police officer.
Lt. Perkins won't back to work until August. Meantime, it's off to Florida for a much-needed family vacation.