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Kindergartners surprise deaf custodian by signing ‘Happy Birthday’

TULLAHOMA, Tenn. – Heartwarming video shows a class of kindergarteners in Tennessee surprising their custodian, who is deaf, by signing the “Happy Birthday” song.

On Tuesday, Hickerson Elementary posted the emotional moment to Facebook with the caption:

“Our Kindergarten classes learned how to sign Happy Birthday for Mr. James’ birthday today. He was so surprised!”

The custodian, identified by The Tennessean as James Anthony, immediately brought his hands to his head in disbelief, his mouth open in a stunned smile.

Dozens have commented on the video to wish Anthony a happy birthday, or add their own memories of him when they were students.

“Happiest of birthdays, Mr. James! You haven’t aged a bit,” wrote Elizabeth Fox. “What a blessing you have been to the students and staff of many Coffee County schools.”

“I am 34 years old and Mr James was my janitor at Hickerson as well!!!! GOD BLESS this wonderful man!!!!!!!!!!” Jordan Carter commented.

Anthony has worked for more than 20 years in the Coffee County School system, according to the paper.