On Monday, Tennessee’s Luca Cesterino got an emotional shock during his Taekwondo class.

The 9-year-old’s army dad — who’s been in Jordan as part of Operation Enduring Freedom Spartan Shield — surprised him.

As reported by WSMV, unbeknownst to Luca, Staff Sgt. Rob Cesternino had come home from a 10-month deployment.

The two’s reunion was caught on video, and now the rest of the world can share their joy.

Rob told Luca his strength during the absence had made him proud:

“I love you, and I’m so proud of you. You were such a big boy while I was gone.”

Speaking to The Lebanon Democrat, Rob explained that the Cesternino family has a rich history of defending America:

“We are a military family. My family served in every single generation all the way back to World War I. It was expected in my family. I tell people that the military is a family business. I have a son that was in the Coast Guard; I have a son that was in the Navy; my daughter was in the Air Force. It’s just expected that you wear the uniform of your country. You don’t have to make it a career. The service — it’s important.”

At his fighting class, Luca was in the middle of sparring, blindfolded — he couldn’t see his opponent. In full fatigues, Rob stepped in as his son’s sparring partner. When the boy realized dad was home…well, watch for yourself, in the heartwarming video below.

-Alex

 

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