After 10 months in Russian prison, Brittney Griner has safely made it home to the United States. However, Roger Carstens, the special presidential envoy for hostage affairs, shared a heart warming story about Griner, who is known for being friendly and outgoing.

Carstens was on CNN when he described the moment he and Griner got on the plane to take her home. He said she could have all the space she wants to decompress. Griner wanted none of it.

“I’ve been in prison for 10 months, listening to the Russians. I want to talk,” Carstens said during his CNN appearance.

Carstens went on to say Griner introduced herself to all of the crew members on the plane and talked for 12 of the 18 hours on the flight back to the United States.

“I was left with the impression this is an intelligent, passionate, compassionate, humble, interesting person, a patriotic person,” Carstens said. “But above all, authentic. I hate the fact that I had to meet her in this manner, but I actually felt blessed having had a chance to get to know her.”

Griner was detained for 294 days after Russia used her as a political pawn against the United States. After the U.S. midterms, Russia gave the U.S. one offer for a prisoner swap: Griner for detained Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.

“There has not been a day over the past ten months where we all haven’t had Brittney Griner on our minds and in our hearts and that has now turned into a collective wave of joy and relief knowing that she will soon be reunited with her family, the WNBA player community, and her friends,” the WNBA said in a statement. “BG has shown extraordinary courage and dignity in the face of enormous adversity.  The WNBA is grateful beyond measure to the Biden Administration, the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs, and all those who played a role in bringing BG home today.”