Oklahoma football: Military man aboard Sooner Schooner surprises family

SURPRISE FOR A MILITARY FAMILY — The University of Oklahoma honored Sgt. David Brian and his family on the video screen Saturday. Then the real surprise rode in on the Sooner Schooner.
by Berry Tramel Published: November 16, 2013

photo - A military servicemman surprises his family on the field during the college football game between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the Iowa State University Cyclones (ISU) at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Okla. on Saturday, Nov. 16, 2013. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman
A military servicemman surprises his family on the field during the college football game between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the Iowa State University Cyclones (ISU) at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Okla. on Saturday, Nov. 16, 2013. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman

NORMAN – Lori Curtis' daughters told her their dad would surprise them on Owen Field.

“Don't tell me that,” she told them, “because I don't think it can happen.”

Think again.

Between the first and second quarters Saturday, as 1st Sgt. David Brian Curtis' family stood at midfield, ostensibly to accept an award for the deployed soldier, watching him deliver a taped message on the OU video screen, the Sooner Schooner burst onto the field.

With a certain soldier riding shotgun. Call it the Schooner's finest trip.

“I think I was in shock, until I saw his brother take off running,” Lori Curtis said. “Then it all became real. I still don't believe it happened.”

Curtis, who lives in Eufaula, is a decorated, 23-year member of the Army National Guard. He left for training last Feb. 4 and arrived in Afghanistan in April.

But OU, through Patriot Ford of Purcell, organized a reunion to celebrate Veteran's Day. Curtis was allowed to return a few weeks early. He arrived in Norman on Thursday and had to hole up in a hotel room until making his way to the stadium Saturday.

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by Berry Tramel
Columnist
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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