PRATTVILLE, Ala. (WSFA) - There was a big military surprise Thursday at Prattville High School. Senior Mason Taylor had just received his diploma when his military brother pulled a ‘stage right’ and surprised the entire family!
Malik Taylor talked about the nervousness he felt with what he hoped would be a joyous surprise for his younger brother.
“It was my idea. I had time to come, so I show my face where ever I can," said Airman Taylor. He joined the United States Air Force six months ago.
Talk about ‘top secret.’ No one knew Malik was coming except their dad and teacher Pamela Barnes.
“I tried to keep it to myself with one of those Christmas mornings type,” said Barnes.
The big moment came. Once Mason’s name was called, Malik made his move and, with a shriek from their mom nearby, and Mason’s facial expression, this was indeed ‘mission accomplished.’
“I love you brother,” Mason said as the two embraced on stage.
Malik drove from Lackland Air Force Base in Texas to Prattville, a distance of more than 800 miles, for the surprise.
“That’s my brother. He’s graduating. I never thought I’d be able to see this moment,” Malik explained.
"I was in shock...I mean I just couldn’t help but scream like.. ‘oh my God,’ admitted Romona Taylor.
The shock was still palpable on the faces of relatives during the photo session. Just for today, no one even thought about social distancing or masks.
“This is like a top moment of my life,” said Mrs. Taylor.
The Taylor brothers are together again, but not for long. Malik has to report back to the military while Mason gets ready for collegiate football with Miles College.
“When we were young we used to fight all the time, but at the end of the day we love each other,” Mason explained.
For now though, the world saw brotherly love up close and personal, not even distance or a pandemic could get in the way.
Mason was a part of a graduating class of more than 400. Because of the pandemic, though, the ceremonies were spread out over four days.