Army Specialist James Muir is back stateside, a 16 month stint working on the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea, 6,600 miles from Burlington, is over.
A military photographer who also doubled as a disc jockey on the base radio station, Muir enlisted right out of high school in 2008.
He calls the Army a "great experience," but said the time away from his new wife, Amy and 18-month old son, Hunter, was "very, very tough."
Skype just isn't the same.
On Thursday night, he surprised them both, walking unannounced up the driveway in Milton to the home where Amy and Hunter were staying with her grandparents.
Joy doesn't begin to describe it.
"I had an inkling something was going on when he messaged me yesterday," Amy said afterward. "Now I didn't know about all of this (referring to a television camera crew) but I had an inkling."
Muir, 23, says he looks forward to beginning his college career and working as a photographer, after some quality time this summer reuniting with his family.