Soldier dad surprises daughter after 14 months away

Posted at: 01/08/2014 5:47 PM
Updated at: 01/09/2014 10:02 AM
By: Mark Mulholland

CLIFTON PARK - Chloe Olmstead, 10, was at the school library Wednesday afternoon working on a project with the rest of Mrs. DeGennaro's 5th grade class.

Chloe is doing her work, but her mind has been on her dad. She hasn't seen him in 14 months.

Michael Olmstead has been in South Korea where he's been serving as a staff sergeant with the U.S. Army.

Chloe had Jan. 16 circled on her calendar. That's when dad was finally coming home.

Or so she thought.

During class, her father, in his Army fatigues, snuck into her class and tapped her on the shoulder.

Tears of joy flowed from this surprise reunion.

Chloe, who is usually talkative, was left speechless. Saying she loved and missed her dad so much.

"I'm feeling like really happy to see him and I cant wait to do everything with him," she said.

And the feeling is mutual.

"This is my life right here, my family," Michael said as he pulled Chloe closer to him. "And that's all that matters to me. I missed a whole year of her life, so it's not something I'll ever get back."

Chloe has so many things she wants to tell her father. And he hopes he can make up for lost time. Michael says he's home for good now. But for this moment, they were holding on like they might never see each other again.

The Olmsteads have another milestone coming up. They just learned that Michael's going to be stationed in Louisiana beginning in three weeks. But this time, his wife, Katie, and daughter, Chloe, are going with him.