Grab a tissue before reading this feel-good story.
When Judy O’Connor attended her son Marty’s graduation ceremony at Chapman University on Saturday, May 20, little did she know that she would leave with a degree as well.
Two years after earning his undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado in 2010, Marty fall down a flight of stairs left him paralyzed from the neck down. Physically disabled and mentally “lost” (as he put it), Marty set a goal to earn his Masters in Business Administration.
“After I got hurt, I didn’t know which end was up. I didn’t really have a direction,” Marty said in a story posted on the school’s website. “I needed that mental challenge and wanted to add some professional value to myself.”
Inspired by her son, Judy moved from her home in Florida to Southern California and joined Marty for every one of his classes, jotting down notes and assisting him in fulfilling his dream.
“I’m a geek. I love being in school,” said retired school teacher Judy. “I’m not going to lie. I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.”
When his dream became a reality, Marty suggested to the university that his mother receive an honorary MBA and the school agreed.
“I had worked and talked to so many people to make it happen and I was just so excited for her because she deserved it so much,” Marty told KTLA.
“As a mom, you just want to help your kids get through things,” Judy said. “I always believed in him. I knew he could do it, and I just wanted to have his back.”
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(Photo Credit: Twitter)