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Dad can’t afford daughter’s graduation dress, works tirelessly at her 3 jobs to surprise her with it

A girl who wanted a particular dress for her eighth grade dress let her parents know, but it came with an expensive money tag that her struggling parents couldn’t afford.

This is the story of how his father pushed himself so he could put a smile on his face showing the world how satisfying it is to make a child’s dream come true.

Nevaeha Smith went window shopping for a dress she would wear for her eighth grade dance at Ringgold Middle School in Monongahela, Pennsylvania. She had hoped to find something her parents could easily afford. The dress that caught her eye was priced at $200. This made her uncomfortable, but in faith she revealed her desire to her parents.


Nevaeha’s father, Ricky Smith, was an average man who worked at McDonald’s, Popeye’s, and a Circle K convenience store in Monongahela, Pennsylvania, but still struggled to make ends meet.

That’s why he was a little reluctant to please his daughter when she came home to tell him and his wife that she had found the perfect dress to wear for her 8th grade graduation. and that it was worth $200. “Mom, dad, I want this dress” then asked, “Is it in our price range? ” she says.

Smith’s heart sank at the price because he was well aware of his own limitations, but he told her, “Uh, not really sure, but I can see what I can do.”

Photo of Nevaeha and her father, Ricky Smith | Source: Facebook/ABC News


A practical man who knew how easy it could be to disappoint given his rank in life, Smith made no promises to his daughter; however, he worked hard to save for the dress anyway.

He was already working six days a week, but started taking extra shifts at his three jobs. He would even go so far as to work seven days a week, sacrificing his personal well-being and risking exhaustion to get enough money to buy the two-piece floral dress.

His hard work finally paid off and he was able to purchase the exact dress his daughter indicated, but the first person he spoke to was his wife, Kelly Anne, who urged him to surprise the girl with it. She said, “Why don’t you surprise her?”

Photo of Nevaeha being surprised by the gift of her father’s dress | Source: Facebook/ABC News


Smith decided to take his wife’s advice, but he took it a step further by asking his daughter to stop by her workplace at McDonald’s. His mother joined the unsuspecting child with a camera, ready to document the revelation. He told ABC News:

“I was working at McDonald’s that day and I put the dress on the back.”

When Nevaeha and her mother arrived, Smith pulled out the dress, hidden behind it in a garment bag, and told her that her grandmother had bought it for her. “Not the dress you wanted, but I hope you like it,” he said.

Photo of Nevaeha hugging her father, Ricky Smith | Source: Facebook/ABC News

Nevaeha’s heart sank when she learned that her grandmother had bought the dress because she thought she was about to get an “old lady’s dress”. Her dad admitted that it wasn’t the dress she wanted that wasn’t helping matters.

The video her mother made captured Nevaeha sitting at a table at McDonald’s as her father approached her with the garment bag, although the footage captured her reaction.

One can only imagine how she really felt when her dad carefully unzipped the purple bag and pushed aside a flap to reveal her dream dress.

It took a few moments for a stunned Nevaeha to recover from her shock, but when she did, she jumped up from her chair and ran straight into her father’s arms, hugging him as tight as she could with tears of joy streaming down her face. Smith said:

“To see the look on his face was priceless. All I can really do is smile.”

The footage which went viral immediately after it was posted online captured Neveaha’s tearful face as she attempted to express her gratitude to her father. “It’s the dress!” she screamed. Describing the moment later, she said:

“My heart felt like there was more love than before, I love him and I’m really happy he’s my dad.”

Thanks to her sacrifices, she showed up to her dance wearing the dress she would always cherish as it represented her father’s love.

Smith proved that a father’s love for his child is full of sacrifice and knows no bounds, something his daughter will never forget. Did you like the video? If so, share this story with all the dedicated and self-sacrificing parents you know.


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