Posted at: 06/07/2013 6:25 PM
Updated at: 06/08/2013 11:20 AM
By: Naomi Pescovitz
Laura Sobiech 'Graduation Without Zach will be Bittersweet'
18-year-old Zach Sobiech of Lakeland didn't get to see his song "Clouds" reach 7 million hits on YouTube. This weekend, he will miss another important milestone: his high school graduation ceremony.
Sobiech died last month after his struggle with bone cancer. But his music is still making waves around the world.
Though Sobiech won't participate in commencement at Stillwater High School on Saturday evening, he did complete his studies and even received his diploma.
"He applied at the U of M and was accepted, and that was important to him. Because we always had to have some room for that miracle to happen. Something planned beyond just cancer," said Laura Sobiech, Zach's mom.
Laura Sobiech will attend Stillwater High School's commencement. There will be a moment of silence when Zach's name is called and the school will have an empty chair in his honor.
"It's going to be bittersweet. I'll be cheering on all those friends who stood by him so faithfully but I think there will be tears," Sobiech said.
Laura Sobiech says the family home in Lakeland is much quieter now that Zach is gone.
"Now I'm kind of reflecting on, and I think all of us are, reflecting on, how much we've lost over the last four years, and it's a lot," Sobiech said.
For Laura, Zach's absence is ever present.
"He just had this unique zeal for life, he was always excited about something. And I miss that energy. Of not having that Zach bouncing around the house," Laura Sobiech said.
"I miss the music, hearing him strumming the guitar, and hearing him sing. I miss that," Laura Sobiech said.
Laura remembers the last time he played. A few days before Zach died, he was still making music.
"He laid on the couch and just held his guitar, and strummed it and only played for about 2 or 3 minutes... It was a big part of is life right until the end," Laura Sobiech said.
Zach's musical dreams more than came true, with his melodies making moves on international charts, millions of YouTube clicks, and more finding his story every day.
"We hear over and over again is, we miss him and we didn't even know him," Laura Sobiech said.
"One of his big messages was that it doesn't take that much to change the world. And the place to start is just to put a smile on somebody's face that day, that was his goal. That's what he tried to do every day and I think he accomplished it," Laura Sobiech said.
Watch the full interview with Laura Sobiech by clicking here.
Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty and Thomas Cook covered Zach's "Clouds" to start the show during KS95 Live95 at Varsity Theater.