I've been enjoying the Syracuse Orange football team's week at Fort Drum, mostly since I'm not the one getting up at 4 a.m. to run wind sprints. But also because it's been nice to see the team give back to the soldiers at the base in their own way.
But where are the human interest stories? That's what I've been waiting on. If NBC were in charge of this week, we'd be up to our necks in well-lit sob stories about fathers and sons or long-lost relatives reuinted for the first time. Of course, if NBC were in charge, we wouldn't know what happened until October, so, plusses and minuses.
We finally got what we were looking for yesterday with this story about Ryan Nassib's chance encounter with a former neighbor that he hadn't seen since he was a small child. That neighbor grew up to be a soldier at Fort Drum...
"At first I didn't know who this guy was when he was staring at me because I haven't seen him since I was five, six years old," Nassib said. "Then once I put the name together and I was reminded who he was and who his family was, all of those memories started coming back. I was more friends with his younger brother and he was more friends with my older sister. It's a small world."
"His dad's really proud of him and talked to my dad who gave me the heads up a couple of years ago," Lieutenant DeNenno said. "I didn't put two and two together until I realized he played for Syracuse and he is coming up here. I looked at a few pictures online so I could get his face and hone in on him and try and save him from the drill sergeants."
DeNenno is actually a liaison between the the SU team and Fort Drum, making this chance encounter even cooler. Go read the whole story here.