Last updated: 04:30 PM ET, Mon May 02 2016

WATCH: Pilot Surprises Veteran Son on Flight Home from Deployment

Airlines & Airports | United Airlines | Donald Wood | May 02, 2016

WATCH: Pilot Surprises Veteran Son on Flight Home from Deployment

Photo via YouTube

A soldier on a military-chartered United Airlines flight from Germany to the United States recieved quite a shock on his way home from deployment.

That's because the plane's pilot was actually his father.

According to, United Airlines captain Mario Lopes took the assignment on April 14 when he found out he had the opportunity to fly his son home from Frankfurt, Germany, following a nine-month deployment in Kuwait.

When Lopes found out he would be piloting his son’s flight home, he and his wife kept the news a secret, and the captain managed to surprise his son—First Lieutenant Mario Lopes—with a giant hug and warm greeting on the plane.

Captain Lopes has been a United pilot for 40 years, but he said he never believed he would have been able to pull off something so special.

“When I was hugging him, I did say welcome home, I love you and kissed him on the cheek and we just hugged for a few minutes,” Captain Lopes told FOX 5 DC. “His eyes opened up like saucers and he was extremely surprised and we just embraced and hugged.”

Captain Lopes shared the video of the meeting between the veteran and his father:

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