East Texas Navy Reserve Home From Iraq Surprises Children - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

9/28/07-Longview

East Texas Navy Reserve Home From Iraq Surprises Children

It's a reunion that's hard not to get a little teary eyed over.  For the first time in 10 months, an East Texas Navy Reservist, just home from Iraq, is reunited with his children.  Johnny Villasenor wanted to surprise his children who thought their dad was coming home Sunday.

It's the sights and sounds you would expect at a high school pep rally.  The band and cheering from the stands, but Friday's pep rally at Pine Tree High School was not just about Friday night's home football game.  It was also about one of their own seeing her father for the first time in almost a year.      

"I just wanted to surprise her because it's been a long time I've been gone, and it was beautiful to see her again," said Navy Reserve Seabee Johnny Villasenor.  Villasenor, 42 was called from the Navy Reserves 10 months ago to serve in Iraq.  A full time Longview Police Officer at home, Villasenor says in Iraq he was a steel worker building bridges for the Iraqi people.

"It's something that you are not ready for because it is sort of unexpected, but they told us it was coming and it came, and I answered the call and I went, and I'm glad I did," said Villasenor.  The hardest part, Villasenor says was leaving his children.   Especially, when his son Johnny, 19 was about to have back surgery.

"Of course, I would have loved to be there for him," said Villasenor.  "I couldn't be there for him, nothing I could do, but pray."  Friday, Villasenor was there for his son, surprising his son at work. 

"I told you it was going to be ok," said Villasenor to his son.  "Didn't i tell you?".

"Pretty surprised," said Johnny Villasenor.  "He told me he was coming in Sunday afternoon, so I had no clue.  I really look up to him, and he really shows everybody what to go by and everything."  From tears of joy to smiles, knowing their father is finally home.

Villasenor says he has some time off before he has to go back to work for Longview Police. He plans to use that time to get reacquainted with his children.

Molly Reuter, Reporting. mreuter@kltv.com

 

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