TAMPA (FOX 13) - It's a celebration typically held at a military base and filled with lots of pomp and circumstance. But Major Mary Milne's promotion ceremony happened Friday at Florida Hospital Tampa.
"She is therefore promoted in the United States Army to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel."
Their ceremony took place inside the chapel and surrounded by about a dozen loved ones.
Milne's husband, two sons, and parents all playing a special role in her pinning. It was exactly the special and intimate ceremony the Army Lawyer wanted.
"My family is the one constant, and this means as much to them as it does to me,” Milne said. “This is a big deal for them too."
Milne delayed her increase in rank by nearly a month. Then made the decision to move the promotion ceremony from where she's stationed up in Georgia down to Tampa when it was clear her mother wouldn't be able to make the journey.
"It's my mom, you know, this is so much about her, she got me to where I am," said Milne.
Emily Nelson had an operation Monday and is still recovering. She's also fighting the rapid progression of Alzheimer’s Disease. Mom may not be able to say it, but Milne's parents are extremely proud of their daughter.
"Mary was the last one of our daughters we ever thought would join the military,” said her Dad, Mike Nelson. “She was the little one, she was the timid one, afraid to swim, afraid to do this and that, and all the sudden she's a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army."
The 20-minutes ceremony was filled with smiles, laughter, and tears. A memorable and emotional event the entire family got to take part in.
"And it was really the only way to do it, I couldn't imagine doing this without them," Milne said.