Freed hikers, their families thank senators

By DONNA CASSATA | October 12, 2011 | 12:55 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two American hikers held for more than two years in an Iranian prison thanked two U.S. senators for their help in pressing for their release.

Joshua Fattal and Shane Bauer — and their families — traveled to Capitol Hil Wednesday to meet with Democratic Sens. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania and Al Franken of Minnesota to express their gratitude for their work.

They gathered in Casey's office, where Franken told them "we're just so happy you're back."

They were joined by Bauer's fiancée, Sarah Shourd, who also was arrested by Iranian soldiers in July 2009 as the three hiked near the Iraq-Iran border. Shourd was released after 14 months.

Iran said they were spies. The three have said they got lost while hiking. Fattal and Bauer were freed last month.