Soldier surprises son during school assembly - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Soldier surprises son during school assembly

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JEFFERSONVILLE, IND. (WDRB) -- A school assembly in Jeffersonville turned into a huge surprise for one student.

Second grader Austin Baker thought it was just a normal school program until his father appeared.  U.S. Army Specialist Shane Baker has been serving in Afghanistan, and was gone for six months.

Austin Baker says when he saw all the TV cameras, he thought the school was just being featured. He didn't realize the cameras were for him and his dad. He says, "I was like, wow, and I was nervous."

Specialist Baker says, "I was nervous for him. I know he's pretty shy in front of a bunch of people and knew he would be in shock for the first couple of seconds."

Baker had been deployed to Afghanistan for the past six months. There, he worked on Chinook helicopters.

The special surprise took 10 days to coordinate with emails back and forth between Baker and a teacher. She wanted to make this a memorable day for dad, son, and the whole school.

Specialist Baker says it's been a hard six months not being able to see his family and missing his son growing up. He says, "You kind of feel like you're not coming back. You know you are, but you go with that thought that you might not come back and that may be the last time you say, bye."

Austin says, "I heard there's as lot of stuff going on in Afghanistan so I didn't know if he was going to come home in October or November or December."

Austin says he's so happy to have dad finally back home. Students are happy too. They made dozens of cards to show him how much they appreciate his service.

Austin says, "I didn't know when he was going to come, so it was a surprise."  Students also made cards for the soldier to welcome him back home.

Specialist Baker originally wanted to surprise his son in the classroom, but says the school assembly was an even better idea.

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