Taylor Crafton was perfectly content to have a cardboard cutout of her dad that a family friend crafted sitting in the balcony of her high school graduation while he was completing his final deployment with the Air Force in Cuba.
But even the excitement of being handed her diploma could not match the feeling she got when her real dad, Chris, surprised her by jumping onto the stage — and when she jumped into his arms.
“I’ve missed a lot – you know, birthdays, Christmas, that kind of thing,” Crafton told KHON Grand Forks in North Dakota. “So I just tried my best to get here for when she graduated. This is my last deployment so I had to make it happen.”