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Soldier returns home to Gilbert after 3 years, brings sister to tears with surprise visit

PHOENIX — A soldier returning home to Gilbert, Arizona after being away for three years decided to play one of the sweetest pranks a brother could pull on a sibling.

Inside Edition” reported Shane Rader has been stationed in Italy and had only seen his sister, 16-year-old Elizabeth, sparingly since being sent overseas by the Army.

When he returned to the United States in March, he took a few days to plan her surprise.

“He played it off through Snapchat, and made it seem like he was still in Italy and would be there for a while,” Shane’s brother, John, told the show. “He let me know, but he didn’t want to tell anyone else.”

The videos started with John saying, “Here’s Shane. He’s home, so we’re going to surprise Elizabeth right now.”

Shane and his brother walked into a house and, despite a dog barking excitedly, Elizabeth did not turn around from watching TV.

It’s only when Shane went to tackle her that Elizabeth realized what was happening. She screamed her brother’s name and jumped into his arms.

The pair embraced for a long while and Elizabeth burst into tears.

“They grew up together, they always lived together,” John told the show. “[Our older sister and I] were already old enough that we moved out of the house, so they were the only siblings they had growing up.”

Elizabeth asked how the moment was possible.

“I was just talking to you,” she said to her brother. “How were you on a plane?”

Shane admitted he had been in town for a few days and his sister seemed shocked, but all was quickly forgiven as she gave him another hug.

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