NC community helps 7-year-old celebrate birthday during father's deployment, pandemic

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(Photo: WCTI)

ONSLOW COUNTY, N.C. (WCTI) – One Hubert girl had a special surprise on her birthday on Friday, a large parade including friends, family, law enforcement and a musical guest.

Celina's mother, Nikki Berger Andrus, says their family loves celebrating birthdays with large parties. Not only did the coronavirus take a toll on their plans this year, but unfortunately, Celina's father is also currently deployed in Iraq.

“Especially with my husband being gone and stuff like that, we can’t have a normal birthday party," she explains. "It’s great to have this kind of support especially during this COVID virus.”

Nevertheless, Nikki says she knew this year had to be another big celebration, so she threw Celina a birthday parade.

The seven-year-old says she brought her Daddy Doll to the parade and watched all of her friends and family drive by her home in Hubert with signs in hand, throwing confetti and passing her gifts.

The Hubert Fire Department and the Onslow County Sheriff's Office also surprised Celina on her big day, and country singer Bryan Mayer also stopped by to sing Celina a birthday song.