COLUMBUS, Ga. (AP) — An east Alabama man who was dying of cancer got to see his son receive his high school diploma thanks to the efforts of his family and school administrators.

Mike Bowden of Seale was too sick to attend Russell County High School’s commencement to see his son Michael graduate.

But wife Jessie Bowden asked the school for help, and administrators presented Michael with his diploma early in the family home.

The man died two weeks later. Jessie Bowden says the special ceremony brightened the family’s life at a dark time. She says she knows her husband died as “a very proud daddy.”