Photojournalist: David Tate
Roanoke, VA - "I thought that the happiest day of my life was when my daughter was born... tonight [Monday] has taken the number one spot," said Benjamin Smith, Brittany's father.
Before Brittany reunited with her family, Benjamin Smith and other family members wanted to address the media.
Surrounded by nearly a dozen family members in town to greet Brittany, her father, South Boston Police Officer Benny Smith wanted to first of all thank God.
He then thanked everyone for your prayers, the media for keeping the story fresh, the tireless detectives and finally, the California woman who made this reunion possible: Theresa Shanley.
"My hero. It's not anything that I can say to describe the way my heart feels about you. So a simple thank you and God bless you," he said.
Smith says he hasn't yet talked to Shanley, but would like to.
As for Brittany, she'll be returning to the South Boston area where a majority of her family is.
Smith tells ABC 13 that there will be a lot of quiet time and prayer, while giving Brittany plenty of space, and as he said, anything she wants for Christmas.