HATBORO, Pa. (CBS) – A Bucks County family received an emotional surprise Sunday after Todd Simmons, who’s been deployed overseas for two years, finally came home. Now, his family is making big plans.
Simmons, a Petty Officer First Class in the U.S. Navy, surprised his two daughters during their dance rehearsal at Center Stage Dance Academy in Hatboro, Montgomery County, on Sunday.
The dance class erupted in cheers when Simmons entered and was finally reunited with his family. His 6-year-old daughter Emaleigh Simmons immediately ran into her father’s arms. She had no idea her dad was coming home.
Her birthday is Tuesday, so having her dad home was an early present.
Simmons’ 4-year-old daughter, Aleigha Simmons, also tightly squeezed her dad.
Simmons serves in the Navy and had been deployed to Bahrain since October 2017. That was the last time he saw his little girls and wife, Ashleigh.
“I was just super excited for my girls,” Ashleigh Simmons said. “They had no idea and it was so hard to keep this quiet. I’m so glad that’s it out and they just get to enjoy spending time with him.”
“I know my wife, having the kids then getting older, I’m sure it’s getting a little more difficult,” Todd Simmons said. “Maybe a lot. I don’t try to think that her job is any less difficult than mine. Trust me. So having the kids has got to be quite a difficult task.”
For Todd Simmons’ mom, reconnecting after so long was emotional. But why the dance studio for the reunion?
“This is their family. This is where they come for stability every day,” Denise McNees, Simmons’ mom, said.
Simmons is only home until the end of March. He will then be deployed back to the Middle East.
During his time home, he said he’s going to spend every second he can with his family.
“We’re supposed to go out to Great Wolf Lodge,” he said. “I just come home and get told what to do. That’s how that works.”
Simmons also got to see his daughter’s dance rehearsal.
The whole class wore red, white and blue for the Simmons family.