On April 14th, Tom Urbik was serving as ship engineer aboard the freighter Liberty Sun as it headed to Sudan with emergency food provisions. As the vessel passed Somalia on the Gulf of Aden, it was attacked by pirates with rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons.
The pirates were unable to board the ship and eventually the US Navy came to the rescue.
The Liberty Sun was damaged but was able to complete its mission.
Yesterday, with the ship in Singapore for repairs, Urbik arrived at his home in Batavia for a family visit and some R&R.
I arrived at the Urbik home about 20 minutes before Tom.
The first thing I noticed was the decorations above the Urbik garage. There was an American flag, a sign welcoming Tom home and a skull and cross bones with a big red line through it.
I knew at that point that I needed to get that in the background of my photo.
When Tom arrived he was greeted by a gauntlet of family members hugging Tom as he made his way up the driveway.
Hug. Click. Hug. Click. Hug. Click. Hug. Click.
Finally, Tom made it to his grandfather Jerry and had to work his way around the table that his grandfather was sitting at.