NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- Excitement, a little bit of nervousness and caps and gowns characterize any high school graduation.

As hundreds of Maury High School seniors crossed the stage to receive their diplomas, Melinda Powell started crying. She knew one student, her 18-year-old daughter Nateria Powell, was missing.

“Lovable, caring, loved to help anybody,” said Powell. “She just had that love for everybody.”

On May 21,2017, Nateria Powell was shot and killed in the 1300 block of Lead St. in Norfolk. Less than a month later, she would have graduated from high school.

“It was a bittersweet moment seeing everyone walking up, lining up, when they were coming to sit down,” said a family member. “Just not seeing her walking in with her class just really like, broke everybody’s heart."

The Powell family was presented Nateria’s diploma during the graduation ceremony.

“She did everything that I wanted her to do to accomplish,” said Powell. “She just kept pushing and pushing to make me, her brothers, her stepdad and our family proud.”