The 17-year military veteran was finishing a tour in Afghanistan and was supposed to be back for the weekend’s Nebraska game, where his family was asked to do the pregame coin toss.
Hawke told his wife and 6 children he couldn’t be there because he had to stay behind for another 30 days.
That’s why they were so surprised when one of the Nebraska players took off his helmet during the coin toss and it was their dad.
The family broke down in smiles and tears of joy. It’s a coin toss none of them will ever forget.
It’s not often you get to bring your family to tears of happiness and live out your childhood dream at the same time.
But Staff Sgt. Matthew Hawke found a way. He was able to do the historic Memorial Stadium Tunnel walk in full Nebraska Cornhuskers gear and surprise his family.
Staff Sgt Matthew Hawke walking off field with daughter. He surprised his family at midfield after 10-month stay in Afganastan. pic.twitter.com/2LplvoUbQf— Brian Rosenthal (@GBRosenthal) April 15, 2017
What a great moment!— Shawn Eichorst (@BigRedAD) April 15, 2017
Glad we could help welcome home Staff Sergeant Matthew Hawke.