WOOLMARKET, MS (WLOX) - After serving overseas for nine months, Air Force Major Steve Gautreaux had a different mission today. That was to bring a homecoming surprise to his six children, who are all students at two different schools.
United States Air Force Major Steve Gautreaux arrived on the Coast on March 28 after serving nine months in Turkey.
The mission to surprise his six children on multiple fronts was highly classified. Only a select few were privy to this sensitive information. His strike team drew up a plan to divert the kids' attention.
"I told them I need to help a friend who was recovering from surgery to go help them," said wife Amiee. "They believed me."
Gautreaux's parents were also in on the caper.
"Last night, I went and slept over there and told them their mom had to help a friend who had surgery," said Chuck Gautreaux, Steve's father.
As Major Gautreaux showed up this morning at North Woolmarket Elementary, the plan to surprise four of his children was executed with precise military proficiency. His son's Thomas and Jerry and daughters Ellie and Anna were caught totally off-guard.
"My mom told us she was going to help out a friend who had surgery because she didn't have any relatives around, so I had no idea about this," said daughter Anna.
Phase one of the surprise incursion was successful, but the Gautreaux's had to pull off phase two, and that was surprising their other two children at D'Iberville High School.
That ruse involved getting daughter Clare and son Jon out in the open. It worked, and the Gautreaux's were able to pull off two surprises. "It's great. I'm really happy,' said daughter Clare. "I'm glad, I missed him a lot. I'm glad he's home."
So is everyone involved, including of course, Major Dad.
"It was great," said Gautreaux. "A lot of hard work and surprising, and just the beginning of two weeks of fun."