Sterling Heights Boy’s Kindergarten Graduation Speech Brings School to Tears
A 6-year-old boy had parents, teachers, and his fellow students in tears after dedicating his kindergarten graduation speech to his 'beautiful mommy,' who he lost last year.
Jaxon Carter's mother, Taryn Marie Gainey was killed in an apartment fire in July of last year, just weeks before he started kindergarten at New Dawn Academy, a STEM-focused charter school in Sterling Heights.
Jaxon's dad Justin Carter tells Good Morning America that Jaxon's mother's death left him scrambling to find a school for his son.
"I had to find a school for him last minute and it just so happened that the school was a great fit for him," Carter said. "The school alone was a lifesaver."
Asked to Give a Kindergarten Graduation Speech
Carter said his son's teacher asked Jaxon if he would be able to give a "little speech" at his graduation.
Jaxon worked on the speech with his paternal grandmother, Linda Howard-Carter, but they kept its contents a secret. Neither of them would share any of it with Jaxon's father until the graduation ceremony.
Jaxon soon had the audience's undivided attention when he spoke about starting school. "I was a little 5-year-old who had lost my beautiful mother a month before," he said.
The articulate 6-year-old talked about learning to read, play with other kids, use correct grammar, and "grow braver, smarter, kind-hearted, and more grateful."
Jaxon thanked his teacher, saying she has a big heart, and thanked his four grandparents who are all pitching in to help raise him.
But it was when Jaxon spoke of his parents that the crowd began to get emotional.
Jaxon gave a special thank you to his dad, saying, "You are the best daddy ever, and I love you so very much."
And a Heartfelt Dedication
Then the little boy ended his speech by dedicating it to his late mom.
"I dedicate my speech, good grades, all school awards, and my kindergarten graduation to my beautiful mommy, who I will always love and miss so very much," he said. "I know she will always be with me in my heart."