06/20/2013 02:21 pm ET

Nick Balenger, Paralyzed Teen, Walked Across The Stage At His High School Graduation (VIDEO)

Last summer, high school senior Nick Balenger was paralyzed in a swimming accident that changed his life forever. The star pitcher on his school's baseball team could no longer play sports, and he needed a wheelchair to get around.

But according to WUSA9 News, a wheelchair wasn't necessary for one special occasion. After months of hard practice, the Virginia teen used a walker to walk himself across the stage and receive his diploma at his high school graduation.

Watch Nick receive his diploma in the video above.

“Ever since I got hurt I said my goal was to be on stage walking across and going down the steps,” Nick said. “It feels great to accomplish it.”

Last month, another amazing teen shared this achievement. NBC Los Angeles reports that Manny Rios, who was paralyzed from the chest down in a bicycle accident, walked the stage at graduation with the assistance from his therapist and a walker, while the audience cheered him on.

“He always said he was going to walk across the stage to get his diploma,” said Mirna Hennicke, Manny's sister.

For high school senior Taylor Habernan, her big day also had extra significance. Though the heart transplant patient wasn't able to attend her graduation because she was in the hospital, she virtually "walked" across the stage.

Taylor's sister walked across the stage holding an iPad and thanks to a five-camera stream, she felt like she was actually receiving her diploma with the rest of her class.

"She was ecstatic. Just like any other senior, she did it," her mom told ABC News.

What do you think about these inspirational graduation stories? Tell us in the comments or tweet at @HuffPostTeen.



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