Soldier surprises 9-year-old daughter at school before Thanksgiving


FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – A nine-year-old girl got the surprise of her life Tuesday. When Kendyl Kraick started to share a Thanksgiving story with her class at Aboite Elementary, she had no idea what the ending would be. After seven months, her father Master Sergeant Travis Kraick came home early.

“I’m so excited,” she cried as the two hugged.

Kraick deployed to Africa with the Indiana Air National Guard. It wasn’t his first deployment, but it was the longest.

“My love for my country has grown tremendously and I’ve gained an appreciation as an adult for the freedoms that we have here and now I continue to serve because I want to uphold those values,” he said.

Kendyl didn’t think he’d be home for Thanksgiving. “I wanted to surprise you,” Kraick said. “I love you,” Kendyl replied.

“I was kind of sad, really, really sad that he couldn’t be here for Thanksgiving but now he is,” Kendyl said.

She had a surprise for him surprise for him, too.

“I didn’t want you to miss out,” Kendyl said. It was journal she’s kept for him while he was away so he could catch up on what he missed.

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