Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus had 10 years of their lives stolen from them after they were kidnapped and tortured by Ariel Castro.
Because they were being held captive and forced into the unspeakable for a decade, Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, and Michelle Knight, his three victims, missed out on several of life’s milestones.
On Wednesday, at least one of those milestones was recaptured by Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus.
Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus got to walk across the stage at the graduation ceremony for John Marshall High School in Cleveland. That is the high school that Amanda, 17 at the time of her abduction, attended and the one that Gina, just 14 at the time of her abduction, would have attended.
Amanda Berry said after the ceremony, “It was awesome. I always wanted to grow up and be somebody and do something with my life, you know? I always planned to graduate, and my mom always wanted that for me, to see me cross the stage. So this means everything to me.”
For Amanda Berry, graduation from high school was to be a step closer to her dream of being the first in her family to go to college.
In the new memoir written by Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus, with help from journalists Mary Jordan and Kevin Sullivan, Berry wrote in a journal-like entry that was dated for the morning she was kidnapped, “After I graduate from college I am going to earn enough money to buy my own house.”
That dream is still attainable by Amanda Berry, and perhaps having her diploma will inspire her to go ahead with her plans.
Congratulations to Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus!
What do you think of these ladies finally being able to graduate?