“It's been really hard, I know she's definitely missed him,” said Ashley Vargas.
It was a special moment for a special little girl who's been missing a hero she calls…
“Daddy!” screamed five-year-old Ava Vargas.
“My heart felt like it was going to come out of my chest. I was so anxious to see her. I was a little nervous also because it's been like ten months since I've seen her,” said U.S. Marine Sergeant Eddie Vargas.
“I just kept thinking about it, I was worried because I wasn't sure how it would make her react,” said Ashley.
Little Ava Vargas was unaware her dad was even coming home. He's been stationed in Okinawa, Japan for the last two years. He's been home once for Christmas, but for just a short period of time
The look on her face was priceless,” said Ashley.
Ava’s mother Ashley has been coordinating the homecoming with Fannin Elementary school administrators for weeks and says it was the perfect timing for the perfect memory.
“I lost sleep, I was just tossing and turning because I was so excited,” she added.
“I just saw her and I was like (pause) … it was awesome,” said Sergeant Vargas.
“I think it's great that we could keep this moment and have it for our memories,” Ashley said.
Sgt. Vargas will be home for the next three years and the family is looking forward to more special memories to come.
“That one on one time is special and Ava knows that time is really precious,” Ashley added.
Okinawa, Japan was Sergeant Vargas' second deployment since 2007. The family will be moving to Houston in the next week so that Vargas can begin his next chapter of recruiting for the military.