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Oxford Sailor Surprises Sister at School

By Alyssa Schnugg
News Editor

Brandon Gunderson, with the U.S. Navy, surprised his sister, Olivia Friday at Oxford High School with his return home.
Photos by Alyssa Schnugg

Brandon Gunderson decided to give his sister, Olivia a surprise Christmas gift Friday – himself.

Gunderson, 19, who is the U.S. Navy, has been away for six months for training. He showed up at Oxford High School Friday morning and at 11 a.m., he walked into his sister’s classroom.

Olivia burst into tears and ran into her brother’s arms.

Earlier that morning, Gunderson surprised his mother, Stephanie and older sister Kaylee at High Point Coffee on Old Taylor Road where they work.

“I knew he was coming home this month for leave but didn’t know it was going to be today,” Stephanie said moments before her son surprised his younger sister at OHS.

Brandon Gunderson and his sister, Olivia.

Gunderson got into Oxford around 8:30 p.m. Thursday and stayed the night at a friend’s house so he could surprise his family the next morning.

Gunderson said he and Olivia are very close and knew she would be shocked and happy to see him.

Gunderson will spend the holidays with his family before returning back on Jan. 2. It will be quite some time before he will be able to return home again, he said.

“I go to Missouri for a week and then on off to combat training,” he said.

Gunderson graduated from Lafayette High School in May and soon left for boot camp. He said he plans to make the military his lifelong career.

“My father (Brian) was in Navy for 18 years,” he said. “I’m going to stay in for 20 years if I can.”

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Adam Brown
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