When Mackenzie Morrill went to kindergarten Thursday morning, she had no idea of the surprise she was going to get.
Her father, who had been stationed for six months in the Middle East with the U.S. Air Force, made a surprise visit to her classroom at Tropic Isles Elementary, bringing the whole family to tears.
Brian Morrill showed up early Thursday afternoon in his camo, and received a tearful hug from his daughter, who was in front of the class with the pointer to help the teacher when he showed up with her mom, Kara, and brother Brady, 4, who got his surprise at Abiding Love pre-school in Cape Coral.
Mackenzie yelled for her dad before jumping into his arms, sobbing, her classmates a little confused by it all.
Kara said it was her idea to do the surprise for Mackenzie, whose dad just finished his final deployment in Qatar before retiring from the Air Force after 20 years in November.
Tuursday's visit was not Mackenzie's first surprise homecoming visit from dad, who had surprised her before following a deployment that had lasted well over a year.
This was more emotional as she's a little older.
"These situations don't come up very often. When they do, it's nice. She and I enjoy it, but everyone seems to enjoy it as well," Brian said.
The kids got to go home for the day, but Mackenzie and Brian's day was only beginning, as they were going to get ready for the daddy-daughter dance coming up that evening, with Brian in his dress blues.
From there, it would be family bonding time before Brian goes back to duty.
Brian will be stationed in Tampa at MacDill Air Force Base for the rest of his tour, giving the family plenty of opportunity to see each other before his service is up.