Refaai Hamo is a Syrian refugee who recently resettled in Michigan. Three years ago, a missile struck his home and killed seven of his family members, including his wife and his daughter. He was working construction when the missile hit, which he did at nights to pay for college. With his other daughter and his son, Hamo moved to Turkey, where he was diagnosed with stomach cancer, but couldn't afford treatment.

Hamo's story of unimaginable hardship and resilience was shared on the popular photo blog Humans of New York, where it inspired thousands, including President Obama. POTUS even left a comment on the Facebook post.


As a husband and father, I cannot even begin to imagine the loss you've endured. You and your family are an inspiration. I know the great people of Michigan will embrace you with the compassion and support you deserve. Yes, you can still make a difference in the world, and we're proud that you'll pursue your dreams here. Welcome to your new home. You're part of what makes America great.

To honor what Hamor went through, and his future contributions to America, the Obamas invited Hamo to the State of the Union address. Here is the heartbreaking story that moved Obama, as well as hundreds of thousands of Facebookers.

Sources: Humans of New York | Time Magazine