HOVEN, S.D. - An American homecoming brings a small Midwestern community together.
U.S. Navy chief Tara Mayes traveled thousands of miles to surprise her 10-year-old son at a mock assembly, planned by her son's school, which he thought was an event to honor service members. Instead, her son, Zach, got the shock of his life as his mom revealed herself.
Mayes says it was an emotional experience.
"It's one of those things you really can't explain to anybody unless they've been through it," Mayes said. "You go so long without being able to touch your children ... it's amazing and nerve wracking at the same time."
Mayes has served in the Navy for almost 13 years and currently works on a destroyer.
Before the reunion, Mayes hadn't seen her son in nearly a year.
Rose Heaphy contributed to this article.
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