Staff Sergeant Patrick Parker surprises children after 9 months in Kosovo

10:59 AM, Mar 5, 2014   |    comments
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Largo, Florida -- After nine months serving his country in Kosovo, a Bay area father is back home, and giving his children the surprise of their lives.

10 News was at Ponce de Leon Elementary School in Largo when Staff Sergeant Patrick Parker surprised his son, six-year-old Gabriel.  The two hadn't seen each other in about a year.

School administrators at Ponce de Leon helped set up the surprise.  They had all the kids go outside for a P.E. class, then Sgt. Parker arrived with balloons and a big hug for his son.

"My wife came up with the idea initially, then it just sort of grew," said Sgt. Parker. "The principal, when she found out about it, decided to get the whole school together and make it a school event. I'm grateful."

Parker surprised his eight-year-old daughter earlier in the day.

Sgt. Parker will be heading to Fort Bragg in North Carolina in a couple of weeks where he hopes to get an instructor position and stay stateside.

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