HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A father got a huge surprise Saturday afternoon when his son, who's on active duty in the military, surprised him at a charity event.
Gary Smith is sporting a new hair cut. He hadn't cut his hair or shaved his beard in more than 12 years.
Those years made for a very long braid and a full beard, but Saturday he shaved almost all of it off as part of a charity event hosted by Huntington's VFW Post 9738.
"They blindfolded me to cut my pony tail off said everyone was going to be blindfolded," said Smith.
However he quickly learned they weren't. In fact, he was the only one blindfloded, while his wife and other auxiliary members worked to hide a very important person.
"Whenever they took the pony tail off the director of the wounded warrior project said is this your pony tail and a man's hand was holding my pony tail not the woman that cut it off, said Smith. "I recognized the ring on the man's finger. It was my son."
Gary's son, Gary Smith Jr., has been on active duty in Afghanistan for a year and a half. He recently came back to the states, but is still on duty in Kentucky and has yet to come home.
Friends say the surprise was beautiful to watch, and that there wasn't a dry eye in the room.
"It meant the world to me," said Smith.
He went on to say his son's efforts made it the best father's day present he's ever had.