Soldier Surprises Family at Rupp Arena

Air Force Senior Master Sgt. James A. Allegrazza gets the homecoming he deserves in his old Kentucky home.

Where are they?

In the end, that’s all that mattered.

Air Force Senior Master Sgt. James A. Allegrazza was a Kentucky kid once upon a time. Growing up at Woodford County High School, he must have loved Wildcat basketball his entire life to want to make such an important memory at Rupp Arena, where he reunited with his family after being away for duty in Southeast Asia.

And yet, he doesn’t look around the court in awe at the players, nearly a dozen of whom might be headed to the NBA in a few season or two. You don’t seem looking at the crowd—one he must have been part of so many times before.

You see him wandering, asking, Where are they?... Where are they?... Where are they?

Where are you?

The same words his family must have wondered for months, words whispered into the night when no one was there to hear, now echoed back.

For a long moment he looks lost, a man in camouflage and boots out of place in the brightly colored arena. The next, his daughter is in his arms, and the crowd is so loud his family can barely speak to each other.

As it should be.


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