Soldier surprises 7-year-old daughter at Spindale Elementary


An Army soldier from Rutherford County came home Thursday after being away from his daughter for three years. He surprised her at school with a bouquet of flowers.

Josh Martin was an infantryman in South Korea for nine months in 2017 and 2018 and has been stationed in Texas at Fort Hood for the past two years. 

Thursday, he surprised his 7-year-old daughter Zaylee Martin several days before she expected to welcome him home. He snuck inside her first grade classroom during a game of “Heads Up 7 Up” and was waiting for her when she opened her eyes. 

This emotional reunion was the first time they’ve seen each other in six months. 

“It’s a big difference from being on the phone and being in person,” Martin said. “Missing three years, basically, of her life. It was really hard. But I’m home for good now.”

The Martin family spent the day doing their favorite thing together: riding dirtbikes and four-wheelers. Josh is now planning to start a new job at a nuclear plant.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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