Jacksonville Radio

High School Valedictorian Alem Hadzic gave his speech at his graduation just hours after his father’s funeral.

Only a handful of people knew his father had died, leaving most of the audience shocked when he shared what he had been through that day. Alem’s father had been diagnosed with cancer during his Senior year and died a day before his high school graduation.

“My father died yesterday, May 15, 2024 and I attended his funeral today, right before graduation,” Alem said in his speech. “That’s why my shoes are muddy and my arms are shaking, because I had to carry him into his grave and burry him.”

His words were met with gasps from the audience.

“I can’t stand up here and pretend I want to be doing this speech right now but I can’t throw something away that he worked so hard for me to achieve,” he continued. Alem then shared that he’s going to college and planned to “Spend every hour of every day working as hard as I can to achieve all of my goals because that’s what he wanted.”

He then asked everyone to look at their loved ones and say they would do the same for them.

You can watch the full video below.