A soldier who returned home after nearly a year overseas surprised his son for a very special reunion that was caught on tape.

Being away from your parents is never easy, and for nine-year-old Luca, he knows the struggle all too well. His father, Staff Sergeant Rob Cesternino, has been serving in the Tennessee National Guard in both Jordan and Syria since May of 2018. WSMV News in Nashville was on hand to capture their emotional reunion.

Cesternino is a father of six children, and he and his wife arranged to surprise Luca, their youngest son, with his father at his taekwondo class after his dad came home four days earlier than expected,

How exactly did they pull this off? Luca's instructors had him sparing three different opponents while blindfolded. The final "sparring partner" — his father — came in while Luca was still going at him, not realizing it was his father.

It wasn't until Cesternino called Luca by his nickname that he recognized it was his dad, asking if it was his daddy. He then ripped his blindfold off and jumped into his dad's arms, with everyone in the room tearing up. Cesternino told reporters,  "We don’t give enough thought to how tough it is on the families we leave behind." Luca was able to talk to his father around once every two weeks while he was deployed overseas

The family spoke with WSMV after their reunion. The boy was filled with emotions and said that he wasn't positive it was his dad at first, and that "I miss him so much." The gym was filled with friends, family, and teammates, and for Luca, it meant the world to see the support for his father.

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