Soldier away on deployment surprises kids during first pitch at Zephyrs game

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by WWL TV

wwltv.com

Posted on June 22, 2014 at 1:00 AM

Updated Sunday, Jun 22 at 2:38 AM

Jaclyn Kelley / Eyewitness News
Email: jkelley@wwltv.com | Twitter: @jkelleyWWL

NEW ORLEANS - It was a surprise reunion for one Covington family at Zephyr Field. 

Sgt. Jason O'Quinn just returned home from deployment overseas and surprised his four kids at Saturday night's game.

10-year-old Triston and 7-year-old Wyatt thought they were just throwing the first pitch at Saturday's baseball game, so when their dad pulled off the catcher's mask they couldn't believe it.

"My dad is right here and I did not know he was right behind the helmet," says Wyatt. "I just did not know!"

It was an emotional homecoming as Sgt. O'Quinn scooped up his kids and held them tight.

O'Quinn, who's served with the Louisiana National Guard 1021st Engineer Company for 13 years, deployed to Kuwait last year and has not seen his family in 10 months.

"Utter amazement, all the butterflies, I was actually more nervous doing this than anything else," says O'Quinn. 

O'Quinn arrived two days earlier and says it was tough for him and his wife to keep the surprise.

"I picked him up and waited, it was so hard," says his wife Brittany. "Right after I got him we were like 'OK we really want to get the kids.'"

"Last night we almost ruined the surprise because we wanted to go see them so much," says O'Quinn. 

In the end, he says it was worth it when he saw their faces light up.

"I was about to have tears of joy," says his son Triston. "I thought we were going to have to wait 11 days because they said they were going to come July 2nd. I didn't know it was going to be a couple minutes!"

Since the boys have been begging to go to a game, O'Quinn thought this would make for the best homecoming ever and he was right.  

"They are amazing kids and this year has been so difficult for them, so I am just happy were were able to make it memorable for them," says his wife Brittany.

Now that he is back home with his family, O'Quinn says he is ready to make up for lost time.

In addition to serving in Kuwait, the Hammond Police officer also completed a tour in Afghanistan back in 2003.

 

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