East Texas soldier surprises mother with his homecoming: 'It's t - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

East Texas soldier surprises mother with his homecoming: 'It's the best Christmas present'

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TYLER, TX (KLTV) -

An East Texas mother says Christmas means more to her this year, after her son, Sergeant Chris Grigsby, who has served in Afghanistan for the past 9 months, surprised his mom with his homecoming.

While mother Debbie Grigsby was eating dinner at a restaurant in Tyler, Chris came in and surprised her. It was a homecoming that had an entire restaurant in applause.

"It was overwhelming," said Debbie. "I hadn't seen him for almost a year and I wasn't expecting to see him so soon, but it was awesome. It was the best Christmas present I could of had."

Being one of three kids that his mother raised all on her own, Chris knew he wanted to do something special for her.

"I was excited, and I was nervous," said Chris. "Once we got about 20 miles coming in, there were butterflies in my stomach."

The surprise homecoming was pulled off without a hitch, and it will be a moment that mother and son say they will hold onto.

"When I realized he was really there, it was just like, 'Oh my gosh,' It's just the best. I was in shock," said Debbie.

Chris wasn't the only one who planned the surprise. His wife Kayla Grigsby was also heavily involved.

"This meant the world to him to be able to do this for his mom," said Kayla. "I think it went great. Seeing her expression was awesome. She started crying, then I started crying. It was nice."

It's a deployment that has put a true perspective on what the holiday season is all about.

"Being able to be home for Christmas and New Years, and be home with my mother is a blessing. It's a true blessing," said Chris.

For Debbie, the surprise serves more than just a Christmas present.

"My birthday is Sunday so this is nice to have him here," said Debbie.

Chris, his wife and two kids plan to be in Tyler with family until January 10th, before they head back to their home in Georgia.

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