Army sergeant surprises daughter during iPrep Academy recital

MIAMI (WSVN) - An Army officer from South Florida came home to fulfill a very special mission: making his daughter’s Christmas wish come true.

Six-year-old Sophia Ramos had practiced performing a song for her classmates at iPrep Academy in Miami for quite some time. Decked out in red reindeer antlers and even a little red nose, she delighted the audience with her rendition of “All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth,” completely unaware of the surprise in store for her.

Sophia Ramos
Sophia Ramos

Deep down, what Sophia really wanted this Christmas was simple: to see her dad, U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Hector Ramos, who had been stationed in Puerto Rico for months.

A 17-year veteran and Purple Heart recipient, Ramos has traveled to fight for the United States around the world in countries like Afghanistan and Iraq.

But on Friday, he had one final stop on his tour of duty: iPrep Academy.

As Sophia sang, Ramos was waiting in the wings, ready to make his daughter’s Christmas wish come true. “I was really nervous,” he said. “Butterflies in your stomach, like your first date.”

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Nothing could have prepared Sophia for this holiday surprise.

“Guess what? Daddy is here,” said one faculty member.

That was Ramos’ cue to walk onstage, bouquet of roses in hand, and take Sophia in his arms.

“It was just a moment of her and I, us, just eyes hitting, and nothing else mattered,” Ramos later told 7News.

When asked what she wanted for Christmas, Sophia looked at her dad and said, “I wanted you.”

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It was an unbeatable bond between a father and daughter, and a heartwarming welcome home just in time for the holidays. “I’m looking forward to it,” said Ramos.

Ramos is scheduled to head back to Puerto Rico on Jan. 6. He will be home for good in just under three years.

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