Best Day Ever: Army Dad Drops in on Career Day from Afghanistan

Career Day at a Hyattsville elementary school was the Best Day Ever for a fifth-grade boy whose father returned from Afghanistan and surprised his son at the assembly.

Sgt. Dellion Sitladin Sr. surprises his son, D.J., at a Hyattsville school's Career Day. Credit: PG Schools YouTube video
Sgt. Dellion Sitladin Sr. surprises his son, D.J., at a Hyattsville school's Career Day. Credit: PG Schools YouTube video

HYATTSVILLE, Md. — An assembly at a Hyattsville elementary school became the best day ever for fifth-grader Dellion Sitladin Jr. when his father — stationed in Afghanistan for almost a year — surprised him at school. 

Only Langley Park-McCormick Elementary School Principal Amy Stout was in on the surprise for D.J., as the boy is nicknamed. 

And the appearance by Sgt. Dellion Sitladin Sr., in Army fatigues, came as an early Father’s Day present to his son. The happy reunion was caught on video by the Prince George’s Public Schools media staff and shared on YouTube.

Principal Amy Stout told the fifth-graders gathered that there was a surprise guest who wanted to be a part of the school’s career day, reports The Washington Post.

“Are you ready for our special guest?” Stout asked the students.

The kids yelled “Yes,” and the elder Sitladin walked into the cafeteria, hugging D.J. to his chest as his classmates cheered.

After the event, “I was really surprised and excited,” D.J. told the videographer before again being embraced by his father.

Sgt. Sitladin thanked the students for cards and letters they’ve sent to troops serving overseas.

“It was funny what you guys said, it really keeps us up. We spend time reading, thinking about home,” Sitladin said. “We all appreciate what you guys did. We get to laugh. … Keep doing the good work, make sure you get all As.”

Among those who have watched the video posted by the district, was Stephanie Embrey, who commented: “I have watched this video over and over because it fills my heart with happiness. How lucky is DJ? Yes, this was the Best Career Day Ever! Welcome home, Soldier."
And an Oxon Hill teacher, chandra5050, said, “I was brought to tears!  It is truly a blessing to have surprises like this for all military children.  Great job Career Day Team!” 
Steven Spiegel June 11, 2014 at 06:55 AM
From one Army Vet to another Thank You MR Sitladin !!!! Just loosing my Dad a few months ago made me think how nice it would be to be in your sons shoes as a kid once again looking up to his Dad . Keep up the good work and be safe if you have to go back !!!!
J Leland June 12, 2014 at 01:43 PM
These stories never get old. Thank you to all military for your service!!
virginia weaver June 12, 2014 at 07:27 PM
Wonderful & touching video.
Deborah Coleman June 15, 2014 at 11:20 AM
These are the BESTEST stories!


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