Dressed in her graduation gown, the high school student shared an emotional celebration with her father on a bridge connecting the United States and Mexico.
“It started as not seeing him on Father’s Day, then it continued to be a spiral of downhill emotions where I would only see him once a year,” Sarai Ruiz posted on Facebook with the video, which has been viewed more than 3 million times.
Ruiz graduated from Early College High School in Laredo, according to the Laredo Morning Times. After the ceremony, she met her father, Esteban Ruiz, on the Laredo International Bridge.
“I tried so hard not to cry when we saluted our parents, knowing that only my mom was there,” Sarai Ruiz wrote on Facebook. “I knew my father would never see me walk to get my diploma but today I’d thought I’d surprise him by crossing the bridge so he could see me with my cap and gown.”
The video drew emotional responses from viewers. “This made me so emotional. Congrats! Do great things for him,” one wrote. “Parents always give the greatest advice and by looking at you and your father’s bond, it seems he raised a great daughter,” wrote another.
Ruiz plans to attend the University of Texas at Austin, the Laredo Morning Times said.