Home for the Holidays
RUTHERFORDTON— Kelsey Owens gave her family the perfect present for Christmas this year.
Kelsey, 21, is the daughter of Kevin Owens and Dawn Teachy. She is an Airman First Class who serves in the Security Forces Unit in the United States Air Force. She surprised her family by coming home for Christmas. This was the first time in a year that she has been home.
"I'm not usually a very touchy-feely person. But when I come home it is always special. I thought if I surprised them, that would make it more special," Kelsey said.
To execute the surprise, Kelsey had a family friend pick her up from the airport and take her to her mom's office and her dad's house to surprise them.
Kelsey surprised her sister Jordan, a junior at R-S Central High School, at the school on Tuesday, Dec. 19.
"I was sitting in Spanish class doing partner work, when they called me over the intercom to come to the office to see my cheer coach. I didn't suspect anything because that always happens," Jordan said. "When I got up there, I saw my daddy first and he was recording me. Then I saw Kelsey and immediately started crying."
Kelsey knew she wanted to join the military by the time she was in high school.
"I have always wanted to be in the military. The army came and talked to use one day at school and that sparked an interest in me. I am currently stationed in Alaska, but I have done time in many places including Afghanistan," Kelsey said.
She says that being able to come home for Christmas is an indescribable feeling.
"It is an awesome feeling being home. It is not one that I can out into words. Coming home is so great," Kelsey said.
Kelsey has each of the family member's reactions to the surprise on video.
"It was great. Jordan cried and momma cried. One of the ladies in the front office said the moment was better than a Hallmark commercial," Kelsey said. "My mom's reaction is already on Youtube and I think I might send all of the videos to USAA Bank. They make commercials with videos of military people coming home."
While she is home, Kelsey will be going to several family gatherings. She will fly back out to Alaska on Tuesday, Jan. 8.
"I will probably not be home for another year, depending on when I get deployed again. When I am gone, I try to call my family as much as I can," Kelsey said. "For now, I will be in Alaska until March of 2014 and I don't know where I will be going after that."