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Stories that made us smile: May 2016

Class flies mom from Nigeria for graduation
Posted at 10:19 AM, Dec 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-27 07:23:24-05

The student body at The John Carroll School in Bel Air surprised one of its basketball stars with an extraordinary graduation gift.

In May, students raised money to pay for a visa and plane ticket so that senior Mike Tertsea’s mom could fly in from Nigeria and watch her son walk across the stage.

Mike’s teachers and coaches even stepped in to support when the senior class came in a few hundred dollars short. Faculty raised the remaining travel funds within an hour.

RELATED: Students and faculty raised money to fly mom from Nigeria to see her son graduate

His mother boarded her first-ever flight and flew all the way to Harford County to see her son for the first time in four years.

While Mike stood much taller than she remembered—at 6 feet 10 inches, to be exact—she told ABC2’s Jaime Costello that she was grateful to experience the special day.

Check out more big stories from 2016

“I’m so happy to be here," she said. "To see my son after four years... it's a good thing to be here.”

Tertsea went on to attend the University of Rhode Island.

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