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Returning Soldier Surprises Family at Hawks Game

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Hunter Taylor wished his family Merry Christmas on the scoreboard at the Blackhawks game Monday, but moments later they received an even bigger surprise. (Published Monday, Dec 23, 2013)

    PFC Hunter Taylor hasn't seen his family very much since he joined the 101st Airborne, but the one thing he remembers, is gathering around the TV to watch Blackhawks games together.

    That's why it was fitting that he was reunited with his parents and three younger brothers at Monday Night's game at the United Center.

    Taylor has been stationed in Afghanistan, so it wasn't clear whether he'd be able to make it home for the holidays.

    "Very emotional to have him back for Christmas," Hunter's father, Jeremy Taylor, said. "We were worried that we wouldn't have him back, and knowing the whole family was going to be together, all the boys together, and that he's home safe after all this time, is very special."

    The Blackhawks invited the family to attend the game and view a greeting from Hunter on the big screen taped in Afghanistan. But after the video segment rolled, Hunter walked out and greeted his shocked family.

    "Not everyone gets a chance obviously, this big, to surprise their family. In fact, a lot of guys, specifically some guys that were in our battalion, didn't get a chance to come home at all," Hunter said. "This isn't just about me and my family. It's about everyone else that didn't get to come back."

    The Hunter family also met several of the players and coach Joel Quenneville after the game.