Clermont County celebrated the return of Army Specialist and local hero Scott Compton with a surprise homecoming ceremony Nov. 26.
Arriving at what he had been led to believe was a surprise party for his grandmother on the Clermont County fairgrounds Nov. 26, an astonished Compton entered the multi-purpose building decorated in his honor to a standing ovation and thunderous applause.
The surprise homecoming party for Army E-4 specialist Scott Compton, who returned home to Owensville from Iraq the day after Thanksgiving, was a way for his family, his friends, and the whole Clermont community to welcome him home from the war-ravaged country and to thank him personally for the sacrifices that he has made over the past 15 months
“It feels amazing to be home,” he said. “It doesn’t get any better than this.”
Specialist Compton, 21, a sniper in the Army infantry that was deployed to Iraq from Fort Lewis, Wash., 15 months ago, was stationed in Mosul for six months before being moved to Baghdad (he was away from home for three years total). Compton, affectionately called Scotty by his family and friends, was on the front lines and witnessed much conflict and combat.
Born in an Alexandria, Virg., military hospital when his father Scott Sr. was in the Army, Scott Compton Jr., from the age of 2, was raised in Owensville. He graduated from Clermont Northeastern High School in 2004 before enlisting to serve our country during this time of war, something that his parents, Scott and Mary, said that he always wanted to do.
"He always talked about enlisting and joining the Army," Mary said. "Nothing was going to stop him from serving."
In a noble twist of fate, Scott's younger brother Timothy, 19, enlisted in the Army infantry the very same day that his older brother was released from combat duty in Iraq last May.
"My brother, who I am so very proud of, inspired me to enlist, " Timothy said. "I am willing to serve like my brother. I can think of no greater honor than defending the freedoms of our country."
The young, courageous Timothy Compton departs for basic training in January.
The surprise homecoming party was attended by more than 125 people, including many elected local and state officials. On behalf of the Ohio House of Representatives, Rep. Joe Uecker commended him on his service to the country.
After countless tearful and sleepless nights, his parents, who are both from Milford and have been married for 23 years, are overjoyed that their oldest son has returned home from the war in Iraq safe and sound.
"What a relief," his father said. "Words cannot express how elated his mother and I are at this very moment. A huge weight has been lifted from our shoulders and we feel so very blessed."
Grandmother Sue Lykins, with joyful tears in her eyes, said that she was so thankful that her prayers had finally been answered.
"I prayed every waking moment for his safe return," she said. "There were times when I thought I would go crazy with worry, not just for him, but for all of the men and women still over there."
Compton, who recently proposed to Owensville resident Sarah McQuitty on the pinnacle of Mt. Rainier in Washington state (she said yes), asserts that he and the rest of the American troops have high hopes and are still optimistic about the eventual outcome of the war.
"We can and will win this war on terror," he said. "It is very frustrating at times, but I would tell the American people to remain patient and vigilant. We all have absolute confidence in our training, our leadership, and our equipment. It will take some time, but everything will be fine."
County Commissioner Bob Proud said that with outstanding Ohioans and local heroes like Scott Compton, that much is assured.