Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon was the surprise speaker at Parkland’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School graduation on Sunday afternoon. The ceremony was expectedly emotional in the wake of the shool’s tragic shooting in February where 17 people were slain.
784 graduates were set to receive their diploma at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Fla. Diplomas were also presented to the families of Nicholas Dworet, Joaquin Oliver, Meadow Pollack and Carmen Schentrup, who lost their lives during the attack.
When Fallon took the stage, he made a speech filled with his normal jokes, but he was more focused on encouraging and the students and commending their courage. “When something feels hard; remember that it gets better,” he said. “Choose to move forward. Don’t let anything stop you.”
The yearly graduation ceremony doesn’t normally have a guest speaker, but this year was an exception as they enlisted the voice of Fallon. The ceremony was kept private and only invited guests were allowed in the arena.
Fallon tweeted a video of himself at the graduation saying, “Congratulations Marjory Stoneman Douglas Class of 2018! You are not just the future – you are the present. Keep changing the world. Keep making us proud. #MSDStrong #YouAreThePresent”
Watch a snippet of his speech below.