It’s graduation season in North Texas.
For one senior, the journey to a high school diploma started in a place where many children don’t have access to education.
Juac Angoi is among the students who graduated from Bishop Lynch High School on Sunday.
Angoi is from Sudan.
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His family fled the war-torn country when he was a year old.
They settled in Dallas and with the assistance of the Catholic diocese, Angoi was able to enroll in the Dallas private school.
He thrived in the classroom and on the football field, winning a championship and becoming Prom King.
On Sunday afternoon, family and friends gathered at Curtis Culwell Center in Garland to celebrate Angoi's latest accomplishment.
The 17-year-old walked across the stage, shook the hands of several school officials and received his high school diploma.
Angoi is now heading to Grambling State University on a full scholarship to play football.
“I am so happy to see my son is going to college,” said his mother Nyanpath Daubar. “If I move back home my son he would never be in college because there’s no freedom. There’s no peace. There’s a lot of war.”
Angoi says his strength comes from hearing his father’s stories from back home.
“[My father] had to raise his family at 10 years old when his dad died, got shot in the war,” said the teen after the graduation ceremony. “It showed me how lucky I am to be in this situation and have both of my parents.”
Those who’ve seen Angoi grow up in Texas say he’s one of a kind.
“What stands out to me about Juac is his big heart and his big smile,” said family friend Tony Parsons.
Bishop Lynch president Chris Rebuck met the teen when he was a freshman.
“It’s just an unbelievable journey and to see what a family’s love and commitment can do to help a young man to get to where he is today, where his college is going to be completely paid for, he has an opportunity to play Division I athletics and he has such a solid foundation in education to go with that,” said Rebuck.
Angoi is looking forward moving to Louisiana in June for football camp and starting school in the fall. He will be an offensive lineman for Grambling State University.
“I get to go to college,” he said. “I get to get my degree and I get to finish school.”