Excerpted from Rare: The military had a small breach in protocol Tuesday morning.

Three-year-old Cooper Waldvoge ran over to his mom told hug her, while she and her fellow National Guardsmen stood in line to be dismissed after serving nine months in Afghanistan.

“I was longing to hold him, that’s all that I thought about,” his mom, Kathryn Waldvogel, told WCNC.

WCNC explains the situation further:

Her first sergeant told her and the other soldiers they would file in to the auditorium and would be dismissed shortly. But they were not to say hello to family members because it would take too long.

Cooper seemed to have no regard for this.

“He just kept smiling like he was in awe of me,” Waldvoge said. “It melts my heart, it’s so great.”Capture

But apparently, this isn’t Cooper’s first rodeo. When his father returned from Afghanistan with the National Guard in December, he did something similar.

“He kind of did the same thing for me,” Cooper’s dad, Adam Waldvogel, said.

“He’s the definition of resiliency, that’s for sure,” Adam said, responding to the fact Cooper has been without his parents in the same spot for a third of his life.


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