Auckland mum Jan Collins could scarcely believe her eyes when a giant red Vodafone present was opened in the middle of Eden Park at halftime in Saturday’s NRL clash between the Vodafone Warriors and Canberra.
As fans at the stadium saw, inside was no ordinary Mother’s Day present at all – in fact, it was Jan’s son Sam, making for a reunion high on emotion and joy.
Jan hadn’t seen Sam, a big Vodafone Warriors fan, for a year. As far as she knew, he was still in Nicaragua on his OE. She’d figured she would probably receive a Mother’s Day phone call from him or maybe a Facebook message.
Instead, through a set of circumstances, a clandestine plan had been hatched for Vodafone to bring Sam home to connect with Mum for Mother’s Day.
Tears flowed in the middle of the field and for the rest of the Collins family in the stand – Sam’s dad Greg and his sisters Amy and Eloise – as Jan got an amazing Mother's Day gift delivered in a rather extraordinary way. Even Sam's seven-month-old nephew was there to be connected with his uncle for the first time.
Sam will be back off on his adventures in a couple of weeks but he'll be in contact with his family thanks to the extra presents of a couple of Samsung S5 mobiles courtesy of Vodafone.
Jan was one of two lucky mothers who won the chance to ‘unwrap’ gifts as match day sponsor Vodafone celebrated mums who support the Vodafone Warriors at the game against Canberra.
Wrapped up in the other package was Vodafone Warriors mascot Tiki.