040814 Lyrique and Sgt Wil Alteus

Most kids don’t want their parents dropping them off in a school parking lot, let alone popping up in a classroom. Mom. Dad. No.

But second-grader Lyrique Alteus didn’t mind a surprise visit from her father last Friday at Mount Dora Bible School in Mount Dora, Fla.

Sgt. Alteus was a single father living with his daughter, Lyrique, in New Jersey when he was called to active duty. He decided to send Lyrique south to live with his sister, Kinley.. Kinley and Lyrique were unsure of his exact return.

Last Friday, a group of students at Lyrique’s school was chosen to play a word game. Each student held up lettered cards, which eventually spelled out “Lyrique’s Dad is Home.” After taking a few seconds to process what she’d just heard and read, Lyrique turned to see her dad in the audience. Even Kinley was unaware of her brother’s arrival.

“My brother wanted to make this special for Lyrique because it was so hard leaving her for those months … it was a huge surprise for both of us!” she says.

Watch the heartwarming video:


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