Grandfather moved to tears after first-generation college grads surprise him outside of nursing home

Two siblings who recently graduated from law and medical schools as first-generation college students brought their grandfather to tears when they surprised him outside of his nursing home in their caps and gowns.

Vana Ebrahimi and her brother, both of Glendale, California, graduated with the class of 2020 from Loyola Marymount University. 

“My brother graduated medical school. I graduated law school. It was very important to share that with my grandpa,” Ebrahimi said.

The family hasn’t been able to hug their 86-year-old grandfather since March due to the coronavirus pandemic. Hayrik Abnous, affectionately known as “Metspop,” fell and broke his hip and leg months before the graduation. He was in the hospital for a month and a half and then transferred to a nursing home for physical therapy, Ebrahimi said.

“For us being an immigrant family, it’s something we’ve all looked forward to,” Ebrahimi said of the siblings’ graduations. “Pandemic couldn’t stop us from celebrating.”

Vana Ebrahimi and her brother surprised their grandfather in cap and gown outside of his nursing home in La Crescenta, California. The siblings graduated from law school and medical school with the class of 2020. (Photo credit: Vana Ebrahimi)

Ebrahimi shared video of the emotional reunion after a nurse wheeled their grandfather to the window of his nursing home, located in the nearby community of La Crescenta. Abnous is moved to tears upon seeing his grandchildren for the first time as law and medical school graduates.

Ebrahimi said her grandparents first moved to the U.S. from Iran in 1989. Her parents later emigrated in 1992. 

“My grandpa has been a very important role model in my life,” Ebrahimi said. It was very important for us to celebrate with him. Little did I know posting that video on TikTok would go viral overnight.”

This story was reported from Cincinnati.