Terminally ill 6-year-old receives honorary diploma at graduation

jordan planitz
Courtesy: Deanna Planitz/ABC News

WAVERLY, Ill. (WKRN) – A terminally ill 6-year-old boy was honored at a high school graduation after the Class of 2015 learned the boy wouldn’t have his own graduation.

According to ABC News, Jordan Planitz suffers from MPPH syndrome. Due to his illness, Jordan suffers from cognitive issues and has a shortened life expectancy.

Earlier this year, Jordan met Tri-City High School’s graduating class when he served as principal for a day at the school.

“Jordan was invited [to be principal for a day], and we went and met the most amazing senior class that you’ll ever come across. They took care of him all day, surrounded him going up and down stairs. It was a wonderful experience,” mother Deanna Planitz recalled.

Days before graduation, Deanna said the school’s principal called with an idea the senior class came up with.

“[Principal Dustin Day] called me and said, ‘the seniors came to my office and told me since Jordan is terminal and won’t be able to have his own graduation ceremony, they wanted to make him part of theirs,” she said, adding, “I was shocked. You don’t find an entire senior class with that much sincerity.”

Deanna told ABC News the experience was bittersweet since Jordan won’t have his own high school graduation. She added the entire gymnasium erupted with applause and a standing ovation when her son received his honorary diploma.

“It was so loud. You couldn’t hear yourself,” she said. “I was crying so hard I couldn’t even get pictures or video. I got to see a dream come true for Jordan and for myself.”

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