Heartwarming Graduation Moments

Graduation truly is a bittersweet moment for anyone.

Graduation truly is a bittersweet moment for anyone.
Image source: The Daily Mail

I’ve always had a thing for tearjerking moments. It’s a guilty pleasure of mine. As a graduate coordinator, I find that graduation ceremonies tend to be rather emotional.

Below are some examples of bittersweet and heartwarming graduation moments.

  1. Zack Ruediger’s story

Recently, a student named Zack Ruediger was about to graduate from his high school when his father died from a blood clot. Ruediger’s mother also died back in 2012. During the ceremony, all 68 of his fellow graduates donated some amount for young Zack. They managed to raise about $800. Another $500 came from Zack’s employer. The class was praised by the superintendent for their generosity.

  1. Manny Rios’s graduation

Manny Rios was left paralyzed from the chest down by a bicycling accident. Suffering from a brain injury, the doctors told him he wouldn’t be able to make it—but he did. During his graduation last May 29, 2013, he went on stage with only his walker and his therapist. As he did so, the crowd cheered on, shouting his name, in a display of praise and support. Manny insisted that he walk across—and he made it.

  1. An Afghan National Army officer’s ceremony

About 29 female officers were mentored by the U.S. army in Afghanistan. One of which received a hug from a U.S. soldier, congratulating her for a job well done. The event spelled a radical change in Afghanistan’s military, as women were given a prominent role in fighting for their homeland. Whatever side you’re on, you just can’t help but he touched by such gesture.

  1. Brockway graduation moment

At Brockway Area High, Dillon Morrison walked across the stage—despite having suffered from a broken neck in a car accident. He stood up from his wheelchair and received his diploma. For this act, he got a loud ovation from his fellow graduates. What a winner!

Graduation is indeed a valuable and cherished moment in one’s life. That is why people like this have treasured it. If you value your academic life, there’s a good chance you’ll value graduation in the same way the people in the examples have, despite the circumstances. So make sure you reach that milestone in your life!


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