May 10, 2014 was a very special day for 2000 Idaho State University (ISU) students who were being awarded for their dedication and hard work over the last few years.
Joshua Kelly could not witness this special moment.
In February, he lost a brave battle against epilepsy when he was just two classes away from his degree in Geology.
However, Joshua’s strong will and determination lived on and were celebrated by the entire institution after his faithful service dog made the graduation walk in his deceased master’s place.
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7-year-old pitbull Cletus accompanied Terrell Kelly, Joshua’s dad, onstage. It was, indeed, an extremely emotional moment for the family who were understandably upset that their son had to leave just days before his final classes.
“This was Josh’s last semester,” the tearful father told Local News 8. “He was taking his final two classes when he ended up in intensive care in February.”
“This is something he’s been looking forward to, forever. And Josh became my hero. He’d get up and walk two miles in Idaho Falls to catch the bus regardless of the weather. And his education, although he knew he wasn’t going to be employable, was very important to him. So he’s here right now.”