Bonza organised a special reunion for Bundaberg-born Melbourne Victory star Josh Brillante ahead of launching its Melbourne flight route tickets which it says will be this week.
In a heart-warming Facebook video, the airline shared the special moment Josh's parents Tess and John surprised him ahead of a big game to celebrate its partnership with football team Melbourne Victory.
“We can't wait to reunite loved ones and bring people together with direct flights as we prepare to go on sale with our Melbourne-based routes next week,” the Facebook post read.
Throughout the video, the Brillante family shared how difficult it had been living so far apart after Josh left his hometown at 15 to pursue his football career dreams.
“As a young boy he always had a football in his hands… playing for Waves at the age of seven – I knew he had something special, ” Dad John said.
“For us to get to Melbourne, it is very difficult,” Tess added.
“When we get a chance, we look forward to just spending that family time,” John said.
Josh said he still visited Bundaberg whenever he got the chance.
“Bundaberg is my hometown, I only have great memories growing up there,” he said.
“That's where most of my family still are.
“Because of where I live and where Bundaberg is located, in the off season I can maybe go back once.”
The surprise visit, organised through Bonza, was an emotional one for the Brillante family.
Tess and John were escorted to AAMI Park to meet up with Josh just before his big game.
“It means everything,” John said.
“This particular game tonight is going to be very special to us, to be able to be here to watch this one – we are very excited.
“It is a really nice thing to have the support of mum and dad visiting…it is not often they get to visit,” Josh added.
“For a big game like this, it is very exciting.”
The video has been showcased ahead of Bonza launching ticket sales for Melbourne routes, after the airline announced in February last year its intention to fly direct from Melbourne to Bundaberg.
The airline confirmed Melbourne tickets were set to go on sale later this week.
You can watch the full video of the Brillante reunion here.