As Alabama high school senior Steven Turner Jr. prepared to walk across the stage to receive his diploma recently, he wondered why the announcer took so long to call his name.
“I got like really worried and nervous,” the Paul W. Bryant High School graduate said. “I thought she forgot my name.”
After a short pause, however, Turner was invited to receive his diploma – followed by a well-kept secret that made his big day all the more memorable. Upon crossing the stage, his mother, U.S. Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Vera Turner, ran out to embrace him after having spent the past nine months serving at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.
Advertisement – story continues below
The mother and son, audibly overcome by emotion, shared a pregnant embrace that soon attracted local media attention. WBMA reported that Vera Turner was able to coordinate the surprise with school administrators while keeping her entire family in the dark.
She had reportedly informed Turner and other loved ones that she would not be able to attend the graduation, making her appearance even more meaningful.
Advertisement - story continues below
“It means like so much to me,” Turner said of his mother’s unexpected arrival. “It means like the whole world. Like, I thought she wasn’t going to make it.”
The proud mom recalled what her son said when they were reunited on stage.
“All he could say was ‘Mama, thank you. Thank you, mama. Thank you. I love you.’”
The good news continues for the Turner family, reports indicate, as Vera Turner has completed her service and will now be home permanently.
Do you support the military? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
What do you think? Scroll down to comment below.