Military Dad Surprises Daughter Who Thinks She's Picking Up Family Friend

An eight-year-old girl who thinks she is waiting at an airbase for a family friend suddenly bursts into happy tears when her mom reveals that actually her dad is about to return from deployment. Carlin Ensman, who lives in Anchorage, Alaska, hadn’t seen her father, Chris, a master sergeant with the Air National Guard, since September 2022 when he had been deployed to South-West Asia. She had been used to her father leaving for training, but this was the first deployment he’d been on since she was born, so the family knew the separation would be tough on Carlin. Chris was expected to return home in mid-January 2023, but when he got news he would be home earlier, on January 8, he and Mandy started working on a surprise. Mom Mandy told Carlin they were greeting a family friend arriving at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. But Mandy then broke then the news to her daughter outside they were really there for her dad’s arrival, prompting a reaction of initial disbelief turning into excited happy tears.