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Anthem neighborhood surprises 90-year-old veteran with parade and flyover

Veteran Tom Smith served as a naval pilot for 20 years. On Thursday, he got a surprise flyover and neighborhood parade in honor of his 90th birthday.

PHOENIX — Imagine walking outside of your house to find your neighborhood is throwing you a surprise birthday parade with a flyover. 

That's what happened to 90-year-old navy veteran and retired high school teacher Tom Smith. The Phoenix native's family originally planned to throw him a party, inviting former students and military buddies, but due to the COVID-19 virus, those plans changed. 

“He thinks he’s just coming out to the driveway like they do every night about 4:30 or 5 and waving at whoever goes by and that’s the kind of entertainment for right now," said Smith's daughter Kelly Felice. 

Kelly posted in the Facebook group "Neighbors Helping Neighbors Anthem AZ," asking the community to help celebrate her dad. The response was immediate. 

Hundreds of people showed up to celebrate. 

“This is beyond my imagination, I would cry if I weren’t out in front of everybody,” said Smith.  


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