Parents in Grand Forks, North Dakota looked on as their kids walked across the stage to get their high school diplomas, but there was one parent missing: Taylor Crafton's dad.
A member of the Air Force, he had been stationed in Cuba for the past several months. (Chris told KHON2 that he was away "for a total of about 1,782 days to be exact.")
With her dad far from home, Taylor assumed a funny cardboard stand-in would have to take his place. "My mom's friend, she made it for us back in Virginia and sent it to us for prom and for graduation so he could still be here in spirit," Taylor said.
As Taylor walked across the stage, she realized her dad wasn't just there in spirit -- he was actually there! He came out to thunderous applause, and everyone got very emotional. Taylor was so overwhelmed, she fell to her knees when she saw him.
"I'm just so happy he's here," Taylor said. "(It's) better than a car, better than anything, so yeah, that's all I wanted for graduation."
In the mood for a good cry? Check out these military reunions: