A six-year-old boy who thought he was heading to lunch at his school bawled tears of joy when his soldier sister emerged from behind a sign saying his name and asking for a hug.
Despite a 12-year age gap, siblings Berlin, 18, and her “baby brother” Kwyll share an incredibly close bond, with Berlin seeing Kwyll as her best friend.
The pair had not seen each other for more than six months, as straight after graduating high school, Berlin headed to Lackland Air Force Base in Texas for basic military training (BMT) and tech school.
While Berlin was away, she was told that she would next be heading overseas with the United States Air Force.
Following this news, Kwyll and her family thought she would not have time to visit him first, but Berlin had other ideas.
Having been granted permission to head back to Great Falls, Montana, where her family is based, Berlin worked on a big surprise for her younger brother.
She made a sign that read Kwyll’s name and then, “… Guess what? Someone wants to hug you.”
As Kwyll walked through the corridor in his elementary school on November 21, he saw the sign but could not tell who was holding it, as Berlin’s face was covered.
Kwyll approached, and as his sister dropped the sign to reveal the big surprise, a tearful Kwyll immediately jumped into her arms.
The emotional moment was captured by Berlin and Kwyll’s mom, Jessi, 41, who also recorded her daughter’s surprise reunions with other family members.
Berlin said of her brother’s surprise: “To surprise my family was the most amazing thing to do, but surprising Kwyll – you just can’t put it into words.
“It definitely hits the heart. I was young when he was born but old enough to remember being six years old clear as day.
“He has been such an incredible part of my life.
“I would sing to him while he was in our mother’s stomach and from the first moment he was born.
“The number of years apart we are means nothing.
“He is my best friend. This day was one of the best days of my life.
“If anything can come out of this story, I would say to never take one day for granted or the people that mean the most to you.”