By: Lanetra Bennett
May 23, 2013
Thomasville, GA - A school graduation turned into an emotional family reunion.
A mother serving in Afghanistan surprised her entire family when she showed up to her son's kindergarten graduation.
Six-year-old Devin Lewis, Jr. didn't show much enthusiasm when they called his name at his kindergarten graduation Thursday morning.
But, what happened next brought the excitement.
His mother showed up.
Army Specialist Ciara Smith surprised the entire family during Devin's graduation at J.K. Harper Elementary in Thomasville.
Smith had just gotten back from serving her second deployment in Afghanistan.
Smith says, "I'm excited to be here with my kids and my family. It's been a long time coming."
Smith's 5-year-old son was also there. He, Smith's mother, sister, grandparents, and other family members were all shocked.
Her mother, Carla Williams, says, "I had no idea. This is the best gift that God could ever give. I am so happy, overwhelmed, over-joyed. Oh, my God."
Smith had been overseas for more than a year.
Missing his mother during that time didn't cause Devin to miss a day at school. He got the perfect attendance award.
Devin's mother was there to see it all. Smith had been waiting in the back of the room unnoticed until Devin's name was called to get his diploma.
"It was really exciting. I thought they were going to catch me." Smith says.
When they did finally get to catch up with her, it was a joyous time.
Devin says one of the first things he wants to do with his mom is go to Fun Station.
There was a big surprise for a J.K. Harper Elementary student in Thomasville today!
6-year-old Devin's mom, SPC. Ciara Smith, US Army, came home from to surprise her son and mother during Devin's graduation.
WCTV reporter Lanetra Bennett was there to capture the moment; we will bring you more on this heartwarming reunion tonight on WCTV Eyewitness News.