Corporal David Johnson's family was planning a party for his arrival but when the Corporal got wind of it he came home early. KLTV 7's LaKecia Shockley tells you why this modest soldier tried to skip all the attention.
You can call it a flipped Christmas surprise. Corporal Johnson's family made T-shirts to wear and welcome him home but the military jokester beat them to it.
"We got home and David was here and I had a sign on the table and it said Welcome home," said Teresa Lewis, Corporal Johnson's Mom.
He surprised them by coming home a day earlier. Now, gathered around his family, Corporal Johnson is making up special times he missed. Like holding his five month old nephew Parker who he's getting to see for the first time.
"David said when he held Parker it almost brought tears to his eyes," said Shawn Lewis, Corporal Johnson's stepfather.
For the last seven months Corporal Johnson has been training Iraqi police and watching over civilians like small children. Along the way he lost some fellow soldiers and in respect for them he declined to talk on camera.
"David feels like the families of the soldiers that didn't make it home ought to be on T. V. besides him," said Shawn.
"We just totally support the troops and our hearts and prayers totally got out to their loved one who didn't make it home," said Teresa.
Corporal Johnson wants East Texans to know it's not all about him, but about the sacrifices of his comrades.
"David is so humble and I think that makes us more proud," said Teresa. "Words can never express the way I feel about him. I mean I love him like he was my own son. We prayed to God to bring him home safely, God delivered him to us," said Shawn.
Delivered him safe, sound, and well just in the nick of time for the holiday's.
"It's just so important to have your family at Christmas time," said Teresa.