Father, son reunite

Published 8:59 am Wednesday, May 3, 2017

TSgt. Robert Naylor Jr.’s reunion with his son, Amari Weathers, was a conspiracy of the best kind. The boys’ parents, school and central office staff were all involved in making the event happen on Monday morning at Westside Elementary School.

Amari, 10, was with friends Aiden McIntyre and Shane Thomas and other classmates as they played basketball in the gym. At one point, Coach Tommy Britt threw the basketball off to a sideline, which drew everyone’s attention to where Naylor had come in and caught the ball. A very surprised Amari ran up to hug his father. Tears of joy quickly filled the child’s eyes.

The two had not seen each other since Naylor was deployed to Kandahar in Afghanistan six months ago.

The tech sergeant, who works with a joint base operation at Fort Eustis and Langley Air Force Base, said that he and his wife, Lattisha, started planning the reunion a month ago. He actually got back on Saturday, but stayed in a hotel on the Peninsula until the surprise. Attending the event were Amari’s siblings Jordan and Kavon with their mother.

Amari said he didn’t expect to see his father the way he did. They frequently hugged as Naylor answered questions from reporters invited to witness the event.