SEARCY, Ark. — One Harding graduate left her commencement ceremony Saturday with more than just a degree in broadcast journalism, according to Harding professor Ginger Blackstone. 

MaKayla Twigg received the best graduation gift of all when she was reunited with her brother, Daylon, after almost three years of not seeing him. 

"It was an exciting day without him here because I was graduating and then... it just got, like, a hundred times better," MaKayla said.

Daylon Twigg is an Airman 1st Class who has been stationed in Japan for the past two years. His assignment in Japan ended a few weeks ago and he is now stationed at Mountain Home Air Force Base in Idaho.

Daylon had told MaKayla that he couldn't make it to her graduation ceremony because he had to work.

"I was like, 'I'm brand new here, I'm still learning some stuff, I'm still trying to figure out what to do,' she seemed like she was very understanding about it," Daylon said. 

"I was, but I was like, not really wanting to talk to him at first," MaKayla said.

"Yeah, she hung up the phone on me when I told her," Daylon said as they both laughed. 

Although he had originally planned to make his appearance during the ceremony, those plans just didn't pan out.

"Unfortunately, with some delays of flights and everything, I wasn't able to get here until this afternoon," Daylon explained. "And so, we just had to make due with what we had."

He ended up surprising MaKayla while she was taking post-grad photos. 

"I wasn't expecting him at all! He called me this morning and gave me this really sentimental speech, but I was like, moving out of my dorm, so I wasn't really listening to him," MaKayla said through laughter. 

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"I feel like we have a lot to catch up on, like I don't know him anymore because I haven't seen him in a long time," MaKayla said, as Daylon nodded in agreement. 

As for what happens next, Daylon gets to stay with his sister until Thursday. Then, it's back to the Air Force Base.