Soldier ‘waiter’ surprises mom at restaurant

COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ/CNN) – A Columbia, Missouri woman got more than what she ordered when she recently went out to dinner. She got the surprise of her life when her son, a soldier, showed up after nine months in Afghanistan.

Brian Gardner had been planning to surpirse his mom for more than two months. He found out he was coming back home to the U.S. in March, but kept it a secret.

It was a close call at first when his mother almost saw him when she walked in.

Brian was hiding out in the Olive Garden kitchen. Then, pretending to be a waiter, he brought ordered drinks to the table.

“Here you go mama!” he said.

“Ohhhh!!!!! Oh my God!” responded his mom, Tammy Coats. “I believe him, my other son, and my mom, everybody else knew but me. I had absolutely no idea he was going to be here today.”

Tammy husband, Brian’s stepfather, is also currently serving in Afghanistan. The family said he should be back January 2015.

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