Military Husband Deployed for a Year Surprises Wife for Her Birthday

Playing Soldier Surprises Wife at Dolly Parton's Stampede After a Year Apart

A military wife in Missouri received quite the birthday surprise when her husband suddenly popped up after a long deployment.

Sgt. Bryan Samsel, of the Army National Guard, had been in Kuwait for a year, and he decided to surprise his wife, Shannon Samsel, at the Dolly Parton Stampede, a dinner that includes a horse show.

"I just wanted to do something special for her," Samsel said before the surprise. "I expect her to cry, maybe beat me up."

Samsel said their family loves the show, so it was fitting for him to hold the surprise there. 

He contacted the Dolly Parton Stampede beforehand and even got his sister in on the fun. Shannon believed she was going there for her birthday.

Shannon was plucked out of the crowd to “play a game” just before the big moment.

In a video of the special moment, Shannon jumps into Samsel’s arms as people there to watch the show in Branson look on and cheer.

“I’m glad to be home,” Samsel told the Branson Trilake News. “I’m looking forward to spending some time with Shannon, Axton, 4, and Addison, 1 (the couple’s children), and making some great memories.”

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