LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - "Emotional. Overwhelmed. Blessed."
Those are the usual words to describe how most mother's feel about their children on graduation day. But for the Kessler's, it's much more than that.
"When I think of my brother - he's just a fighter," fellow graduate and one out of four siblings Nick Kessler said. "He's really strong."
He has no reason to be anything less than proud of his brother's accomplishments. This past year has been nothing short of an uphill battle as Ballard High School Senior, Matthew Kessler, has already undergone two surgeries to remove a tumor growing in his brain.
His sister, Emily, told WAVE 3 News her brother Matthew "stayed positive throughout the whole thing."
Matthew was a manager for Ballard's basketball team. He didn't want to be excluded from his classmates. That's part of what kept Matthew motivated during his final high school year.
The endless family support also played an important role in Matthew's life.
"Hardworking, and loving people," Matthew said.
In the end, however, it was Matthew's own personal words of encouragement to "keep pushing, believe in yourself, and never make excuses," that not only helped him reach his graduation goal, but will continue to push him through college.
While this was a tough journey for the Kessler's, his other sister Sydney said she's proud of her family.
"Ordinary people, who've just remained strong through it all," she said.
Matthew is in rehab now.
All four siblings plan to attend college.