Dwyane Wade, reflecting on the challenges at a Florida school where a mass shooting took place last year, told the school’s 2019 graduating class that “I’ve never experienced anything to the magnitude that you guys just experienced.”
Wade was a surprise speaker for graduation at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Sunday. In his speech, he shared his perspective on his first visit to the Parkland, Florida, school in March 2018, three weeks after the shooting that killed 14 students and three staff members.
“I remember walking to the school, and I remember hearing absolutely nothing,” Wade said. “I remember thinking to myself, ‘I’ve never heard this kind of silence before in my life.'”
Wade then related his surprise at the reaction he got from people at the school, saying they made him a part of “this amazing family.”
“As I was walking in, students started seeing me, I remember seeing smiles, people running, pulling out their phones,” Wade said. “… I remember thinking, ‘Wow.’ It was packed. I didn’t expect that.”
The now-retired Wade has been a regular supporter of the school ever since. He was honored that Joaquin Oliver, who was killed in the attack, was a huge fan of the former Miami Heat star and was buried wearing a Wade jersey.