Harlem military family surprised by 'Ellen,' given $25,000

By: Katie Beasley Email
By: Katie Beasley Email
The Faile family on

The Faile family on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show." (WRDW-TV)

News 12 at 6 o'clock / Thursday, Nov. 8, 2012

HARLEM, Ga. -- The surprises just keep coming for one Harlem family. Last month we introduced you to the Failes.

Sgt. 1st Class Scott Faile shocked his family at the Georgia-South Carolina football game with a surprise homecoming from serving overseas. (Click to see link) Video of the surprise went viral. Now Ellen DeGeneres is giving the family an even bigger surprise.

Tammy Faile knew Ellen had heard about their story, but she wasn't expecting the phone call or the visitor she got Wednesday night.

"I was actually talking to my dad on the phone and they beeped in and I said, 'Daddy, I've got to go," so when I answered the phone, she said, 'Is this Tammy Faile?' And I said, 'Yes, it is' and she said, 'Hi, this is Ellen DeGeneres,'" Tammy said.

Little did the Failes know, outside their Harlem home was Kym Douglas, Ellen's friend, who was ready to surprise the family.

"Cameron went to the front door and answered it and that's when they all just busted in the house," Tammy said.

"When they walked in I didn't know who it was at first and then my mama yelled that it was 'The Ellen Show,'" said Tammy's son, Cameron.

With Ellen still on the phone, the family started answering random questions for money.

"She said whatever questions you answer correctly you win $1,000 -- for every question you don't answer right, she takes all the money back," Tammy said.

They had fun with the questions, and a little dancing, but then Ellen had the real surprise.

"You're going home with $25,000," Ellen told the family.

"We are a military family -- it's a struggle a lot of times, so it was very overwhelming," Tammy said.

"It was awesome," Cameron said.

While Sgt. 1st Class Scott Faile is grateful, the 21-year Army soldier sure didn't expect this.

"To me, it's kind of undeserving because I originally did all of this just to surprise my family. It was just for them," he said. "I know for a fact 10 percent is going to go to the Wounded Warrior Project because those are the ones that deserve it a whole lot more than me."

"Surprise of lifetime," Tammy said.

"Are you sick of surprises by now?" asked News 12's Katie Beasley.

"No," she laughed."I think my husband is, but I'm not."

The family says 10 percent of what they get will go to the Wounded Warrior Project, the rest will go toward paying some bills, and then if they have some left over, it will be for repairs around the house and hopefully a vacation. Cameron says he just wants a PlayStation 4.

Click here to watch the whole segment on Ellen.

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