TELFORD, TN (WJHL) – It’s always tough to be away from those you love most.

So when a surprise visitor made a stop at a kindergarten classroom at Grandview Elementary School, one student couldn’t believe his eyes!

After nine months of deployment in Iraq, U.S. Army Specialist Peyton Toth wanted to be the first to surprise six-year-old A.J.

“I’ve always been close to him. He’s kind of like a little brother to me. I’m an only child so he’s somebody I get to spend my time with,” Toth said.

So he asked his dad, Jeffrey Toth, for a favor.

“He called a week ago and asked if I could ask somebody at the school if he could come see A.J. at school and surprise him,” Jeffrey Toth said.

He said the school system was thrilled to help out with the surprise.

“They seemed about as excited about it as I was just waiting for him to come home, which was a blessing,” he said.

During class Friday afternoon was the big reunion they’d both been waiting for.

A.J. said it feels like it’s been forever since he’s seen Peyton.

“A long, long time ago,” A.J. said.

When asked what he plans to do with Peyton when he gets out of school, he said play.

Peyton agreed, saying that’s one of their favorite things to do.

“He’ll run around he’ll grab his legos or his little tractors that I’ve gave him and stuff or whatever he’s got laying around he’ll show it to me or he’ll bring coloring books over and we’ll color a little bit and just hang out with him,” Toth said.

He said he will have plenty of time to catch up with A.J.

He won’t be deployed again until 2019.Copyright WJHL 2017. All rights reserved.