On Christmas Eve, Soldier Meets Daughter

Army Sgt. Matt Vega comes home from third tour in Iraq and meets daughter born Nov. 14.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Army Sgt. Matt Vega arrived home Saturday from a third tour of duty and met his baby girl he'd never seen in person. (Published Saturday, Dec 24, 2011)

    Some of the best things in life come in the smallest of packages.

    Just ask Army Sgt. Matt Vega. Fresh off his third tour of duty in Iraq, Vega walked into the terminal at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport on Saturday and met his six-week-old daughter, Leah.

    "To be able to hold her for the first time, it's amazing," said Vega.

    Baby Leah was born Nov. 14, but technology helped make the thousands of miles between them seem just a little bit smaller.

    "He saw her on Skype. She was an emergency C-Section, but he saw her all before and all after," explained Vega's wife, Stephanie Knutson.

    Now home in time for Christmas, the family was able to share their blessing together.

    Many standing throughout the terminal showed their appreciation for a soldier's service as he and his family headed home. The Patriot Guard escorted the freshly-reunited family to Vega's parent's home in Carol Stream.

    "I'm very proud for my son. I'm proud to be an American, and he's my hero," said Gus Vega.