Robot Fills In For Sick Alabama High School Student At Graduation

by Bamidele Ogunberu Posted on May 18th, 2018

Mobile, Alabama, USA: Cynthia Pettway, 17, a senior at LeFlore Magnet High School  in Mobile, Alabama would have missed her high school graduation because of illness, but she got to experience the ceremony from the hospital, thanks to a robot.

Cynthia Pettway was unexpectedly hospitalized a week before she was set to graduate.

Doctors told her she would not be able to leave for weeks.

But, LeFlore Magnet High School officials  had other plans.

Mobile County Public Schools partnered with the USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital so Cynthia Pettway could attend her graduation, without ever leaving the hospital.

“Cynthia Pettway was in the hospital and could not graduate with her LeFlore High School Class of 2018 today. Not in person, anyway. Through a partnership between MCPSS and USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital, Cynthia used a robot cloaked in a cap and gown to virtually walk across the stage. More than 40 members of Cynthia’s family along with friends gathered in a conference room at the hospital to watch the graduation ceremony broadcast live by mcpssTV. And the crowd at the Mitchell Center cheered as the robot took the stage in her stead. “It was perfect,” said her mom, Rachael Johnson. We loved it.” Mobile County Public Schools wrote on Monday.

The response was overwhelming.

“The cheering came and then I got emotional,” Pettway reportely said. “I was crying bad, tears of joy, and my eyelashes fell out.”

More than 40 members of Cynthia’s family and friends gathered in a conference room at the hospital to watch a live stream of the graduation ceremony with her, according to the school district.

Pettway’s mother, Rachael Johnson, called the moment “perfect.”

“We loved it.”

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