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Before deployment, a soldier from Montana surprised his younger brother



Lockwood, Montana – Due to his big brother’s upcoming deployment to Romania, an eighth-grade student in Lockwood had not seen him since the spring and did not anticipate seeing him again for another year.

But immediately after school, the family planned a unique get-together.

Skailur Foos nearly failed to identify Private 2nd Class Kelby Zhang, his elder brother.

After school ended, Foos rushed up to his brother.

“It was amazing,” Foos said. “It was amazing. I never thought he would have been home today.”

Zhang’s younger brother has grown taller since they last saw each other in the seventh grade.

“He definitely has,” Zhang said. “Voice changed a lot too.”

After completing senior high school, Zhang was motivated by his great-grandfather to enlist in the U.S. Army.

“I looked up to my great-grandpa a lot,” Zhang said. “And he was kind of like my childhood hero.”

Zhang was a Young Marine in his youth.

The outfit his grandpa wore upon graduating from Fort Sill, Oklahoma in the 1940s had been revived by the Army for him to wear upon his graduation.

Zhang ultimately chose the same position.

“We were both 13 Bravo’s cannon crew member field artillery,” said Zhang.

Since Kelby and Skailur were so close, Kendra Brown, the mother, and Joyce Mitzel, the grandmother, assisted in planning the great surprise.

“Skailur really missed his big brother and it’s been hard with his brother being in the military and gone,” said Brown. “He doesn’t have his go-to person, which is his big brother.”

“Yea, it was emotional,” Mitzel said. “I was trying to keep this a secret from Skailur, and it wasn’t easy.”

“I think it’s awesome that my older brother is serving the country,” Foos said.

“Everybody’s sacrificing time with family and all of us getting a chance to come home before leaving and everything is really nice,” Zhang said. “And being able to see my little brother before I leave, that’s really nice.”


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