MAPLETON, Minn. (WCCO) – A Minnesota soldier took a timeout during a basketball game Thursday night to surprise his family.

Master Sergeant Pierre Stencel of Mapleton arrived home Thursday night after his mission in Afghanistan. He was announced and recognized during a timeout in the game and walked onto the court to the surprise of his son, United South Central player Cole Stencel.

They had a happy reunion filled with hugs and tears. Pierre Stencel wasn’t able to watch his son play last year because he was deployed the very day his son’s team played its rival.

In a fitting conclusion, Stencel’s homecoming landed on the same night that those two teams met again. It did wonders for United South Central as it handed Maple River, the No. 3-ranked team in Class 2A, its first loss of the season.

Comments (8)
  1. Pammy says:

    Pass the tissues!
    God Bless America! 🙂

  2. DARREN says:

    Thank you Soldier!

  3. checkitoutonyoutube says:

    CNN cuts soldier off in interview during IOWA caucus…Ron Paul gave the guy his podium so he could finish his statement …’CCO does not indorse the foreign policy the soldiers indorse

    1. checkoutadictionary says:


      1. dictionary shcmituary says:

        this is proof of the dumbed down …instead of focusing on the ISSUE,focus on a typo

  4. Mel says:

    Thank you for your service, and thank to your family for your sacrifice of being without your loved one while he served. It’s a great story!

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