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'He would work through pain' | Holt High School creates early graduation for student battling cancer

"He just worked really hard and suffered and endured so much that he deserves this," his mom said. "Sulley, I'm so proud of you!"

WENTZVILLE, Mo. — It's what most seniors look forward to, but for Sulley Menne, he couldn't wait to flip his tassel.

It's a day that's come sooner than expected. 

Sulley is the first Holt High graduate to walk across the stage for the class of 2020. 

But this wasn't just a celebration for his academic success. 

At the age of 15, Sulley learned the hardest test didn't come from math or science, but from life.

Sulley got sick the summer of his freshman year with Acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

For the last several years, Sulley has dealt with relapses and moments of hope. But homebound teacher Bonnie Farmer said Sulley wouldn't let anything stop him from doing school work.

"This young man would work through the pain," Farmer said.

With that same dedication, he fought for his own life.

But just before the new year, he learned his tumors were scattered throughout his body and there were no more treatments left for him.

"I wanted to make sure that was something Sulley didn't miss out on," Assistant Principal Amanda Shelmire said.

That's when Holt High School knew, Sulley deserved a graduation he's worked hard for.

Credit: KSDK

"He just worked really hard and suffered and endured so much that he deserves this," his mom added. "Sulley, I'm so proud of you!"

Sulley walking across the stage is a moment that reminds us that you can never stop learning. And what Sulley teaches us is that no matter how hard life tests you, you can still reach for all your hopes and dreams. 

"I knew I needed to graduate. Now I’m graduating early and I did not expect that, which is pretty awesome," he said. Never give up because you want to be able to do what you want to do!"

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