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Graduation is an especially meaningful milestone for this survivor of Somalia's civil war

Seattle Central College
Fadumo Daud

It's graduation season, and it's an accomplishment for everyone who reaches that milestone. For one mother of three who came here as a refugee from Somalia as a teenager, that degree will help fulfill a promise she made to herself long ago.

In the height of Somalia's civil war in 1991, Fadumo Daud was just eight years old. She went out in search of water with her younger sister, but they were caught in an explosion.

Her sister, Faiza, died. Fadumo's leg was badly injured and she had to have it amputated without anesthesia. As she lay in the hospital, she said she made a promise.

“I prayed to God. I said, 'God, if you help me, I will make sure I help others who are in need, just like I need right now help,’” Daud said.

In 1996, her mother brought her and her four surviving siblings to this country. Daud had to have more of her leg removed because of an infection.

But the procedure enabled her to get a prosthetic and helped inspire her to pursue a health care career. Now she's graduating from Seattle Central College with a bachelor of applied science in allied health focusing on respiratory care.

She said she hopes her three sons see the example she has set and realize they can do it, too.