High school senior graduates at hospital bedside of dying mother

ASHEBORO, N.C. -- Mayerline Obando’s mother, Carla Perez, didn’t know if she’d live long enough to witness her daughter graduate high school, so Asheboro High School officials brought the graduation to her bedside at the North Carolina Cancer Hospital in Chapel Hill Wednesday, June 5 -- two days ahead of the scheduled graduation.

Asheboro High Principal Dr. Penny Crooks delivered a speech and diploma.

“Very special. I’m so excited. A special moment,” Obando said.

It was one of her last moments with her mother, who was battling cancer.

“She said, 'Congratulations,'” Obando said.

Perez died the next day, but not before she heard how much of a light her daughter is to the world.

“No matter what the day was like, she always smiled for me,” said Crooks at Wednesday’s ceremony.

Obando’s education meant the world to her mom.

“Very important. She’s very proud of me,” Obando said.

Obando said she plans to become a massage therapist, inspired by her mom. She gave her parents massages often.

“She was always there for me. She’s a great mom in general. She’s very supportive,” Obando said.