One 9-year-old received a birthday surprise from his classmates, whom he hasn't seen since being diagnosed with cancer.
Elijah Lewis, who has been fighting leukemia, returned to school as his May 24 birthday wish, but did not expect the party that awaited.
"He smiled and he laughed with the kids and they were all so happy," mom Lakesha Lewis told ABC News. "Elijah just said it was the best birthday ever. He didn't want to leave."
Lewis, a mom of three from Baytown, Texas, said Elijah has been undergoing chemotherapy for months now. Due to side effects from his treatment, Elijah has been out of school.
"Since he was baby, he always was excited about going to 'big school,'" Lewis said. "I think he likes just being able to interact with friends ... and learning. He's always been good academically and he's always been into sports. He's always been that kid that always wanted to go. Perfect attendance, never missed a day."
When asked what he wanted to do from his 9th birthday, Elijah told his mother, "I want to go to school and see my friends,'" Lewis recalled.
Lewis checked with her son's doctor and coordinated with the school, which was more than willing to host a special birthday surprise party for Elijah.
Nearby businesses donated their services to the event including Ghost Vision Media (video), Envy Tan (T-shirts) and Creative Yard Sign Greetings, who made the large "Happy Birthday" sign.
All the students from the third-grade class sported the "Elijah Strong" shirts at the school, where there were also presents and cake.
“We were thrilled that Elijah was able to celebrate his birthday with his classmates and friends," a spokeswoman for Victoria Walker Elementary told ABC News. "The entire Goose Creek CISD family wishes him a speedy recovery, and we look forward to having him return to school as soon as he is able to do so.”
Lewis said she was grateful for what the kids did for her son.
"They made his day," she said. "I wish it was a moment that we could've frozen and stayed in forever."