One Fort Carson soldier is celebrating something most of us would never have to miss-- our child's birthday. 1SG Leonardo Paris is with the 204 Brigade Support Battalion 4th ID. But on Saturday, Paris was simply "Dad," celebrating his son Leo's eighth birthday.
It had been 4 years since the last time Paris was home to celebrate with his son. Last year, he returned from Iraq just two weeks after the special day. It's why he says Saturday's surprise party was really a celebration for 4 birthdays, not just one.
"Oh, it's so much better to be here," said Paris. "It's really, really nice to finally be here for him when he needs me the most."
Leo's party was at Tiger George's Tae Kwan Do, and featured an exhibition by the Headhunters Mixed Marshal Arts Fighting Team. Paris says his son is a big fan.
"Last time we had Pay-Per-View, Leo's favorite wrestler lost and he cried," said Paris.
But Leo says his real hero, is his dad.
"He's my hero, because he saves our country," said Leo. "Everyone should think he's a hero."
Paris says he's not sure where he'll be this time, next year. But while his son prepared to blow out the candles on his birthday cake, Paris made a wish of his own.
"I hope I'll be here."