Soldier returns home to father diagnosed with Parkinson's disease

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By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver

PHOENIX -- A family arranged a special surprise homecoming for a Valley soldier who was deployed to Cuba.

Family and friends were anxious to finally see Rosa Moreno.

“When she got deployed, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in June 2013 and gotten worse since she's left, so she hasn't seen me,” said her father, Andrew. They said it's a slow-moving disease, but it hasn't been slow moving on me.”

It was the first time Moreno would see him since he was diagnosed, and he had mixed emotions as he waited for her at the airport.

"I'm nervous, scared, happy,” he said. "I know she'll love me no matter what, but I want to be strong for her.”

"We're a very close family, so to be away from her has been really, really tough,” said her mother, Maria.

When they started to see Moreno as she arrived at the airport, Mom gripped onto Dad.
 
Dad received the first hug. He and his daughter had tears in their eyes as they said how much they love each other.

Mom was next, and then other family and friends.

“It's OK. I'm home now. I'm home," Moreno said.

“I told her I'm not letting her go,” her mom said. “She's staying with me for a long time."

“I'm just thankful to be home,” Moreno said.

It was an emotional moment for Moreno as she looked around at her loving family, thankful to see each and every one of them, especially her dad.

“I missed my dad. He looks different, but I was ready for it. They told me everything about my dad beforehand, so I was ready to see him when I came home,” she said. “Looks like my dad still. Still my dad. It's good to see him.”