CHICAGO (CBS) — An Army mom delivered a big surprise at her son’s Southwest Side elementary school on Tuesday.
CBS 2’s Roseanne Tellez reports third graders at Louis Pasteur Elementary School at 5825 S. Kostner Av. piled in the gym Tuesday for a lesson on Memorial Day; but for one student, it turned out to be much more.
There was a slide show, and 10-year-old Isaiah Gonzalez read a brief history of the day.
As the son of a soldier, he knows more than the average kid about sacrifice, but he knew nothing about Tuesday’s surprise, when his mother, Sgt. Frances Escobar, walked into the gym.
Isaiah hit the floor running, a perfect cap on the moment mother and son had been waiting for.
Escobar said she’d been dreaming of the moment she’d be reunited with her son when she returned from Afghanistan.
“I’m very excited I’m here,” he said.
What is Isaiah going to do with her now that she’s home?
“Everything. Everything I’ve wanted to do with her,” Isaiah said.
Escobar has had to leave Isaiah and her 3-year-old son Aiden behind twice in three years, as she served two tours of duty in Afghanistan as a logistics specialist.
There were tough moments for Escobar, like when Aiden was reluctant to go to mom after she showed up.
But she knew he would warm up quickly.
After cameras turned away, Aiden charged over, wearing a great big smile as he hugged his mom.
There will be plenty more smiles in the week ahead.
Escobar said she plans to take them to Florida to visit Disney World, Sea World and Universal Studios.
“Whatever we can do in a week, we will do it,” she said. “You plan to miss your kids, you just don’t plan to miss them so much.”
Escobar has only one week before she returns to base in Colorado for a month, then the family will be reunited for the long-term.