LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A Kentucky second-grader got the surprise of his life this week when his father returned from National Guard deployment and surprised him at school. 

Luke Johnson, a student at Hustonville Elementary School, is still smiling two weeks after the surprise.

"He's been gone since I was in the first grade," Luke told LEX 18. "He doesn't fly but he fixes planes and helicopters."

Mandy Johnson, Luke's mother, said there's only one thing more important to her husband than his deployment: his family.

"He always wants the best for us," she said. "He always provides for us and does everything that we need. He sacrifices his time to go and do things, to help benefit us."

For months, Luke's school stories could only be shared through a screen.

"Talking on the phone and Facetime just isn't the same as seeing dad in person," Mandy Johnson said.

So on the third day of school, Luke was surprised to see a special visitor standing at his classroom door.

"He had to do a doubletake at first," Mandy Johnson said. "He saw him, then he kinda looked over and he looked back. He knew daddy was there and he took off."

Captured on video, Luke can be seen running into his dad's arms, his mom standing nearby watching the reunion more than a year in the making. 

"I just ran up and gave him a hug," Luke said.

"That was an awesome moment," Mandy Johnson said. "Luke cried. Well, we were all crying, but you could just see the excitement in Luke's face and how much he missed his dad."

With his dad on deployment again, Luke said he'll be hunkering down in class, waiting for the next time he sees his dad in person.

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