EL PASO, Texas – A video of a high school graduate visiting her deported father at a port of entry is going viral.
The video was posted on Twitter by Leslie Silva of Eastlake High School. Dressed in her cap and gown, you see Leslie walk across the bridge on Zaragoza and give her father, Mario, a hug.
Leslie said her father has been deported three times.
She said she wanted her father to be the first person to see her, before she walked across the stage.
“He didn’t really see any of my sisters graduate and he missed a lot of things in our lives that he wasn’t able to be there for,” Leslie told ABC-7. “So I just came up with the idea to see him before anyone else did.”
As of Monday night, the video had over 700,000 views and had been retweeted over 19,000 times. Leslie said she never expected the video to get so much attention.
“We just posted it so my friends from school could see it or someone small,” Silva said. “But it exploded everywhere.”
Silva said she believes the video is relatable to many families living on the border.
“We’re not the only ones that go through it, and there are a lot of people that go through it but don’t really say anything,” Leslie said. “They can relate to it.”
Leslie’s sister Ingrid was the one behind the camera. She says because of the video, others are now sharing their own stories about separated families.
“Just that the word is being put out, it’s amazing,” Ingrid said.