A Wausau kindergarten student had a big surprise at school Friday. Her dad showed up. What makes this special is 6-year-old Bianca Withers has barely seen her father, Staff Sergeant Joshua Withers, for the past two years.
Mr. Withers has been serving in the U.S. Army on assignment in Germany for the past three years. His wife Alisha and Bianca moved home from Germany two years ago, and there have been very few, brief times the whole family has been together since.
Bianca is a student at Thomas Jefferson Elementary School on Wausau’s north side. The whole school was in the gym for an assembly, which focused on the great job they have done on their reading goals. At the end of the program, a staff member asked the students if they could imagine being without one of their parents for two years and explained that Bianca’s father was serving our country in the Army, and he was supposed to be coming home Saturday.
Bianca didn’t know dad was a day early. As the students recited the Pledge of Allegiance, Staff Sgt. Withers entered the gym, and Bianca noticed immediately… running into the arms of her dad. You could hear “daddy” over the gym full of students still in the middle of the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mr. Withers is still active duty Army, but has a new assignment. He will be an Army recruiter working out of the Plover office, and he will not be deployed overseas for at least the next three years. This will give him plenty of time to spend with his wife Alisha, Bianca, 2-year-old Celine, and other family members.
Bianca says she wants to spend a lot of time with her dad, and watch some television together tonight. She also doesn’t want the Army to take dad away anymore. That could still happen, but Staff Sgt. Withers says it’s possible he could be home longer if the Army wants him to remain in the recruitment office.