The teen, after overcoming many obstacles, was finally graduating and it was exactly what his late mother wanted in her life.
Graduating is a big deal for any youngster as it marks the time when they have overcome many challenges to secure an educational qualification. For Paul Marhsall, Jr., graduation was just as exciting as it would be for any other student. But before achieving a new milestone in his life, the teen with Down syndrome wanted to deliver a special message to his late mother, so, he decided to visit her grave. A video of Paul Jr. sharing a wholesome message with his mom at her grave is making the internet cry. He made sure to celebrate his graduation with her first and his story has touched the hearts of millions.
As per KSLA News 12, as soon as Paul Jr. heard his name being announced on graduation day inside Haughton High's football stadium, he couldn't help but start dancing with joy. He expressed, "I was just happy when they called my name." He revealed that he just improvised his dance as he went to collect his diploma. In fact, Paul Jr. has always resorted to a celebratory dance whenever he has achieved anything. He expressed that he would miss being in high school and that he was sad about having to leave.
His journey through life has not been an easy one since he was born with a single kidney and a defective heart and was also diagnosed with Down syndrome. Despite overwhelming odds in terms of health, he had a contagious love for life that people around him cherished. Speaking about his son's attitude toward life, his dad said, "If you're having a bad day or going through something, Paul Jr. is the person you want to be around and talk to that day." But Paul Jr. had to suffer one more tragedy in life when his mother died of cancer when he was just nine years old. He reflected on her passing, saying, "God has my mom. And my grandmother will take care of my mom."
For Paul Jr., graduation was important for one more reason - it was also his mother's dying wish. However, it wasn't an easy path for him. The youngster was just a year away from graduating when he encountered an issue with his heart. Doctors advised that a new heart valve be put in, which was done. A few months passed and he had to get a new kidney as well. His father decided to donate one of his kidneys to his son and the boy had to undergo over eight hours of surgery. Paul Sr. spoke about how his family had become resilient to such medical setbacks. He shares, "Paul Jr. could be hospitalized for five days, and on the 6th day, he's out and laughing."
A week before his graduation ceremony, he told his father that he wanted to make a stop before getting to his school. Paul Sr. revealed: "A week before, he said, I want to go by mom's grave and take some flowers." His father complied with his son's heartfelt request and the duo visited his mother's grave so that she too could be a part of his big day. In the video posted by NTD Television on Facebook, he can be heard saying, "Mommy, I've got something to say. I did it. I graduated today. I know you'd be proud of me and happy."
He concluded by stating that he loved her very much and proceeded to place the flowers on the headstone. People loved the boy's genuine gesture towards his mother and expressed how much her wish still meant to him.