College Student Misses Graduation to Give Birth, Gets Special Celebration

PHOTO: Juliet Smith told ABC News that her water broke when she had to be at her Guilford College graduation, May 15, 2015.PlayDan Nonte/Guilford College
WATCH College Student Misses Graduation to Give Birth, Gets Special Celebration

Two weeks from her due date, Juliet Smith was sitting with her family and friends at a restaurant the night before college graduation when she felt a pop.

"Is this your salmon salad?" a waiter asked, unaware of the fact that his customer had just gone into labor as he held out a plate.

Panicking, Smith looked up.

"No," she said.

Only it totally was her salmon salad.

PHOTO: Juliet Smith told ABC News that her water broke when she had to be at her Guilford College graduation, May 15, 2015. Dan Nonte/Guilford College
Juliet Smith told ABC News that her water broke when she had to be at her Guilford College graduation, May 15, 2015.

Smith told ABC News that her water broke on Friday evening, when she had to be at her Guilford College graduation at 7:30 the next morning, and she wasn't due until June 9. As she stood to leave for the hospital, flanked by her fiance and her best friend, a neighboring table of students realized what was happening and started cheering.

By 11:57 that night, baby Milo was born. He was 5 pounds, 7 ounces. But Smith missed her commencement ceremony.

"I was kind of bummed out all morning sitting in my hospital bed and at the same time couldn't be that upset because he was so perfect," Smith told ABC News.

Guilford's dean of students was going to stop by to hand-deliver Smith's diploma, but then something even more magical happened: a professor brought a tuba to play "Pomp and Circumstance" (followed by "Happy Birthday" for Milo), another professor pushed her down an aisle in a wheelchair for a processional as the nurses cheered on, someone brought refreshments and a cheesecake.

"It was really incredible," Smith said. "I still cant even believe that it happened."