A military dad in Connecticut surprised his two children while dressing up as a referee for his son’s high school football game on Friday.
Joe Egersheim, a master sergeant in the U.S. Army, had been deployed in Kuwait and returned to surprise his son, Law High School football player Cole Egersheim, and his daughter, Olivia, who was a cheerleader at the game.
In a video shot of the touching moment, the dad prepares for a coin toss at the beginning of the evening football game. He dons a referee uniform and dark glasses to hide his identity.
Another referee then says, “I want to introduce Joe,” and once Cole realizes the referee is his dad, he gets emotional and embraces him.
He’s quickly joined by his sister as the crowd cheers them on.
“Honestly, at first they said, ‘We have an honorary ref’ and he was wearing dark sunglasses at 7 p.m. and I was like, ‘What the heck?’” Cole told USA Today High School Sports. “Then I took a closer look and saw my dad. I was just so happy to see him.”
Cole and his Law teammates went on to defeat Bethel High School, 34-21.