A touching moment between a returning soldier and his granddaughter warmed the hearts of everyone at a North Carolina Chili’s on Friday night.
Petty Officer First Class Virgil Kiger, of the U.S. Coast Guard, was filmed surprising the little girl inside the Winston-Salem restaurant after returning home from deployment in Papua New Guinea, WXII reported.
In the footage, Kiger, 58, can be seen tapping his unsuspecting granddaughter on the arm before asking, “Hey, can I sit here?”
The girl then whips around, gasps, and stands silently in disbelief before breaking into tears and going for an embrace.
“Pawpaw!” she yells, throwing her arms around him.
"We are so excited to have him home," Kiger’s stepdaughter, Brittney Hendrick, told WXII. She added that Kiger will likely remain home for the holidays.
Kiger, whose unit is based out of Fort Eustis, Va., was previously stationed in Guantanamo Bay for a year, WXII reported. He has served his country for 26 years.