An adorable photo shoot between a U.S. Marine Corps drill instructor and his 4-year-old daughter in Oceanside, California, has gone viral, with pictures of the pair shared thousands of times on social media.
In the photos – taken by Oceanside-based photographer Kyndal Courtney of Kyndal Rose Photography – U.S. Marine drill instructor Kevin Porter poses with his daughter, Ashley, in a field, surrounded by trees and foliage. There, the two partake in a pretend tea party, with the towering drill instructor – dressed in uniform, from head-to-toe – even sitting in a tiny chair across the table from his daughter, pouring tea into her cup. Ashley is wearing a long, white, lace dress, her head topped with a crown of pink flowers.
In another touching photo, Porter kneels down on one knee while holding one of Ashley’s hands and kissing her other hand. In another shot, he twirls the little girl as if they’re dancing in the forest. In the photos, the little girl looks at her father lovingly as they share those special moments.
The sweet photo shoot was arranged by Porter’s wife, Lizz Porter, as a special gift for him and Ashley.
For Courtney, it was a particularly special shoot that she will never forget. The photographer told NBC 7 she has never done a set-up quite like this.
Courtney said Lizz showed her Ashley’s dress before the shoot, and the photographer created the whimsical scene to fit the dress. Lizz, Courtney and Ashley knew the plan was to take pictures of the dad-daughter duo drinking tea, but Porter had no idea what was coming.
“He was a good sport and got into it,” Courtney said, adding that Lizz was there, behind the scenes, smiling as she watched her Marine husband and Ashley play.
Courtney posted the photos on the Kyndal Rose Photography Facebook page on April 10. As of Tuesday, the post had been shared more than 7,200 times and had been liked by thousands of people.
April just so happens to be the Month of the Military Child, a month that underscores the important role military children like Ashley play in the armed forces community.