Early Homecoming: U.S. Navy Dad Surprises Kids Ahead of Schedule

By: Evanne Armour Email
By: Evanne Armour Email

August 26, 2013

A Madison County family is complete after an early homecoming Monday.

Master-At-Arms Second Class John Foster arrived in central Virginia nearly two months before he was originally set to return to the United States from Afghanistan, and just in time for one of his children to have a major surgery.

The U.S. Navy police officer has been away from his wife, Amber, and their four kids -- eight-week-old Nolan, one-year-old Willow, four-year-old Landon and five-year-old Aidan -- for several months.

At a scavenger hunt Monday afternoon, the kids were stunned to find, not a treasure chest at the end of their journey, but rather their dad.

While he was overseas, MA2 Foster missed the birth of his youngest son, Nolan.

"When I went through labor, he didn't get to come home for his birth. He was on Skype, so that was already hard," said Amber Foster.

While her husband was working customs at Salerno, a forward operating base in Afghanistan, Amber was pregnant, working full-time herself and taking college classes.

"She's a strong woman. She went through a lot," said MA2 Foster.

There is another hurdle ahead for the young mother, but this time, she will have her other half by her side.

"Nolan, the baby who is eight weeks old, he has to have surgery on his skull, which is a major open-skull surgery," said Amber Foster.

Foster says she wanted her husband home to be with his son and help make tough decisions involving the surgery.

She contacted the Red Cross, who helped make it happen within a matter of days.

"And Jo Carter with the Navy Family Readiness, I have to thank her as well," said Amber Foster. "She's the one who had our flights scheduled really quickly."

MA2 Foster was originally scheduled to fly back to the U.S. in October.

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