Soldier Surprises Kids At School By Emerging From Mascot Costume After Coming Home Early

They were apart for nine months


A soldier returned home early and surprised his six kids at school by dressing up as the mascot.

Justin Bunch’s family had no idea what was coming next when the soldier removed the head of Big Ridge Elementary’s mascot costume for Twister the Tiger.

In the heartwarming footage, Principal c can be seen calling out Justin’s children one by one as part of the Maynardville, Tennessee, school’s field day events.

Twister – or Justin – was playing a big role in this occasion, shaking the hands and fist bumping the kids as they were called up in front of their peers in the school gymnasium.

Justin, 34, admitted to being extremely nervous during this time, his knees shaking inside the mascot costume.


Then, when he removed Twister’s head, there was a brief pause before the kids realized who was under the costume – with the crowd erupting into hoots and cheers.

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Justin was joined by his wife, Kasey, 32, who helped hatch the plan with the school’s principal, as well as his children Chad 14, Tyler, 12, Brooke, 10, Hayden, 7, Ethan, 5, Ayden, 2, his nephew, Mariano, 11, and his niece, Vada, 7.

He is a platoon sergeant stationed in Fort Stewart, Georgia, with the 526 Engineer Construction Company, 92nd Engineer Battalion, who he has been with since 2015. 


Justin, who was not expected to return home for another month before the May 6 surprise, said: “I was so nervous – I wanted it to be super cool and meaningful for them.

“I was relieved once I saw that they were excited and it filled me with excitement.

“I want to thank everyone who helped me make this special for my children, I am sure it is something they will never forget.”

Courtesy of T&T Creative Media