Friday, June 14, 2013

Soldier's platoon in on surprise visit from his father

Most of soldier's platoon in on surprise visit from his father
Stars and Stripes
By Jon Rabiroff
Published: June 13, 2013

CAMP CASEY, South Korea — Pvt. Benjamin Rankin III thought he was being interviewed Thursday for a public affairs video about his tank unit when he noticed a surprise visitor standing nearby — his father had flown in from Kentucky to help celebrate his 25th birthday.

“I had no clue,” Rankin said. “When I finally took a look to see who was moving next to me (I said to myself), ‘Oh wait, that’s my dad. Wait. What?’”

Before sharing a warm embrace, the soldier’s initial matter-of-fact reaction came as no surprise to his father.

“It was typical of him just to see it, gauge it and then go ahead and react to it,” Benjamin Rankin Jr. said.

But the son said that despite what he called his “calm, calculated composure” throughout the surprise reunion, he was touched.

“Of course I’m excited, it’s my dad,” he said. “It’s a dream come true.”

The reunion makes for a dual celebration: Friday is the son’s birthday, and Father’s Day follows on Sunday.
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