June 24, 2016

A student from East Juniata High School in McAlisterville, Pennsylvania, was involved in a car accident, suffering head injuries that forced doctors to put him into a medically-induced coma. The accident happened on May 22, and he was under for six days.

When he woke up, the young man realized that his entire high school class had graduated without him. It had happened on May 25, just three days after the accident.

When the staff and students at the school heard how disappointed he was that he’d missed the big day, they decided to throw him his own graduation ceremony. Most of the class came back — about 50 out of 80 students. They put their graduation caps and gowns back on. The staff came back to run the program, including giving speeches. The young man and his family were there. Only a single name was called at this second graduation, but it gave him a chance to walk across the stage and get his diploma just like everyone else.

As the principle spoke, he noted that his original speech had mentioned the value of perseverance. He said that the reason the young man was there that day was also due to perseverance.

After the announcement, the students circled up around the young man and they all threw their hats into the air. He said that he was speechless, unable to express how much it meant to have so many people supporting him.

After traumatic car accidents that cause comas and serious injuries, it’s important for those who have been injured and their families to know if they have a right to seek compensation for high medical bills.

Source: Teen Vogue, “This High School Held a Second Graduation for a Student Who Was in a Coma,” Lily Herman, June 22, 2016