High school senior paralyzed in surfing accident walks at graduation

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LONG BEACH -

The walk across the stage to gather their diploma was short for most Long Beach High School graduates, but it was momentous for Robert Browne.

Browne, 18, suffered a spinal cord injury in a 2014 surfing accident and was paralyzed. He's been confined to a wheelchair since then but hasn't let it slow him down.

With a crowd of hundreds standing with him, and his family cheering him on from the front row, Robert walked across the stage Wednesday to get his diploma. He said it was hard and took hours to prepare.

Robert's father was overwhelmed by how far his son has come since his accident, saying one of the worst days of his life led to one of the proudest.

Browne set his goal of walking years ago, but that was almost derailed by pneumonia. He was hospitalized until last Thursday.

As for advice, Browne says to take things slowly and don't stress.

Browne will be studying business management when he heads to the University at Albany this fall.

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