CLEVELAND, Ohio — There was a lot of disappointment after the Browns’ loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, but one Akron family had tears of joy at FirstEnergy Stadium Sunday.
However, the happiness had nothing to do with the score of the game.
U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Anthony Wagner, was able to reunite with his family after nine months of being away. He has been serving in Afghanistan.
Wagner worked with the Cleveland Browns Foundation for several months to set up a public reunion with his daughter Jaelyn, 9 and son Austin, 7.
The Wagners tell Fox 8 it was a perfect moment captured on camera.
The surprise began with a video message from the father to his family, and then he walked onto the field.
“There’s no way to describe it, it’s the best feeling in the world, my eyes were just watering before I even got out of the tunnel. I really couldn’t even see them, I just knew they were somewhere around,” the soldier said.
“It was the best gift the Browns and my husband could have ever done for them because he has been gone so much, four years out of their life,” said his wife, Jennifer.
In fact, the game, despite the loss to the Bengals, will likely go down in history for the Wagners.
The emotions were summed up best by daughter Jaelyn.
“I was very happy,” she said.
“It was really an honor for them to do this for me and my family, it was truly amazing,” SSG Wagner said.