A PV Student’s Early Graduation is a Gift to Dad

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For most high school seniors, graduation day is still months away.

But that wasn't the case in a small room in Bettendorf on Friday, February 26th.

For Lia Bellomy, today is graduation day.

"I actually didn't know this was happening at all," said Lia, wearing a graduation gown featuring the Pleasant Valley High School colors, blue and gray.

"This is a wondrous journey filled with amazing people," said Pleasant Valley principal Mike Zimmer.

And those amazing people include Lia and her father Ron.

"I feel like a miracle happened today," says Ron.

The Bellomy's could use a miracle.    Ron entered Clarissa Cook Hospice last week after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

The family doesn't believe he'll make it for his daughter's graduation.    So Lia's May graduation was moved up to allow a family to celebrate together.

"That was something I didn't think would happen," says Lia.

But Pleasant Valley made it happen so one family could have a lasting memory.

"As you march on, what will never be taken away from you is that which is holding your hand right now and all that represents," said Principal Zimmer during the ceremony for family and friends.

And with that message, the first of the class of 2016 received her diploma.

A daughter's gift to her father.

"That was something that he wanted and was asking for and was hoping for it and it actually happened," says Lia.

And it's a father's best hope for a daughter who has so much to look forward to.

"My little girl turned into a woman today and accomplished a great goal," says Ron.

The rest of the Pleasant Valley Community High School Class of 2016 graduates May 29th.