October 15, 2021
A lot of emotions and teary eyes engulfed a loving family as they all held each other tightly, never wanting to let go of one another ever again.
In 2015, a yellow ribbon was tied around a tree, just waiting for a military father, Chief Robert Massard of the U.S. Navy. This tradition is specific to Inlet Elementary in Clay County in Florida.
They tie a yellow ribbon around a tree with the individual's name on it, only to be cut when they return. The Chief's children had been waiting for months, hoping to see their dad slice the ribbon sooner rather than later.
Chief Robert Massard and his 10-year-old son Ryan hugging and sharing an emotional moment together. | Source: youtube.com/USA TODAY
Seven months into their father's service, the military man's three children, two of which were the then-10-year-old Ryan and his little sister, 6-year-old Skylar, were in for a big surprise. The young boy was told to get a book from the library at school but was not expecting what was about to happen.
The little one was in tears.
Unbeknownst to him, this was simply a ruse to get him into a specific school area so that his teachers and classmates could surprise him. Walking around the corner, his schoolmates were all smiling and waiting for him to spot the man he hadn't seen for ages.
A yellow ribbon tied around a tree. | Source: youtube.com/USA TODAY
Suddenly, the 10-year-old caught sight of his dad and bolted right into his arms, giving him the tightest hug while in heartfelt tears. Chief Massard also began to tear up, expressing:
“We’re good, you got me crying and I can’t do that.”
The crowd applauded as the two kept holding onto each other. Then, in another beautiful moment, little Skylar was on her way, ready for the most beautiful shock of her life too.
Schoolmates waiting to surprise Ryan and Skylar. | Source: youtube.com/USA TODAY
Once the 6-year-old realized who was standing across from her, she ran into her daddy's arms. The little one was in tears as the dad told her he would not be leaving again.
Then, in the cutest of moments, the youngest daughter, who could not go to school due to her age, snuck up behind her dad and older sister with a sweet smile and hugged both of them.
The naval officer said he expected many emotions from seeing his children for the first time in just over half a year. Massard expressed:
"I knew when I saw them cry, I would cry too. This has been a wonderful experience here and I thank everyone who took part in this."
To more clapping, Ryan cut the yellow ribbon off the tree, signifying the end of a journey. At the time, it was stated that this father would not be going away again for at least three years. Let's hope if he did take on another mission that he spent all the precious moments possible with his children.