Lightning surprise kids with father’s emotional return home from military

The Tampa Bay Lightning helped make a father’s return from the military even more special for two of his children. During the first intermission, CJ and Katelyn McKeen were brought out onto the ice for what they thought was an on-ice game, but was instead an incredibly special and heartwarming moment.

For Lightning fans CJ and Katelyn McKeen, the first intermission of Thursday night’s game against the Detroit Red Wings was special simply because they thought they had been selected for an on-ice game called, “The Impossible Goal.” Instead, they were in for an emotional surprise.

As Lightning in-game emcee Greg Wolf broke down the rules for the game, Master Sergeant Christopher Aaron McKeen, currently on a tour of duty in South Korea, began to walk out onto the ice. Wolf asked CJ and Katelyn to turn around as part of the game, and that’s when Katelyn saw her dad and fell to her knees. Both CJ and Katelyn ran to their father, making for one of the most special moments you’ll see at a hockey game all season.

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Master Sergeant McKeen has been serving in the military for 20 years, and, as Katelyn says, the two children weren’t expecting him to come home for at least another two days.

A tip of the cap goes to the Tampa Bay Lightning for their hand in making this heartwarming moment possible, and a hearty welcome home to Aaron McKeen. To make the night even better, the McKeen family got to watch as the hometown Lightning defeated the Red Wings 5-1.