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Military dad dons mascot costume, surprises daughter on senior night

Posted November 7, 2015

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— Sgt. Major Michael Watson has been in the Army for two decades, a reality that has forced him to miss countless moments with his family.

Watson wasn't going to let Friday night be another one.

After getting home a few days earlier from his most recent deployment in Nigeria, Watson donned the Jack Britt High School Pirate mascot costume to make the night one his daughter, senior Kinsey, would never forget.

During senior night festivities, Watson hugged his daughter and then took off the mascot head. Her face –a mix of shock and happiness – told the story.

"It took a minute, even after he looked at me, to process it," Kinsey Watson said. "It meant everything to me."

Watson said he was thankful to be back home.

"That was incredibly rewarding to see. I'm so glad I made it," he said.

Watson said military families all over the country sacrifice when their loved ones deploy overseas.

"It affects them the most. They are the ones who have to continue to drive on," he said.

After graduation, Kinsey plans to study at Campbell University before joining the military.


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