BOSTON (CBS) – Celtics fans were treated to a win Monday night at TD Garden. But the best moment of the night may have come during a break in the action.
During a timeout in the team’s 113-109 win over the Detroit Pistons, family members of United States Air Force National Guard Staff Sgt. Matthew Noll were introduced to the crowd.
As his family members stood on the court, Noll emerged from the tunnel to surprise them.
He was greeted by hugs and tears as the crowd cheered. Celtics players took note of the special moment as well.
“That was big time,” Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas told reporters, courtesy of CSNNE. “That’s probably the best feeling they’ve ever had. You could just see it; you could see them so surprised, so happy. They’re probably at a loss for words. That’s what life is really about; it’s bigger than what we do out there on the floor. Those guys, they put their lives on the line. For their family, that was big time. I’m happy for them.”
Noll had served seven months overseas before returning to surprise his family.