In February 2013, Mike Wasike suffered life-altering injuries after three teenagers stopped him to steal his car on his drive home from work at Wells Fargo where he worked as a credit analyst. was struck on his head with a gun, causing devastating injuries.
He became blind and lost his ability to talk and eat on his own and required constant care for the remainder of his life. In 2015, Wasike was moved to a care facility in Mitchellville to be closer to his family. He was previously being treated in Oklahoma, but the distance made it difficult for family members to visit.
In 2018, 5 years after the horrific attack, Wasike passed on.
A week ago, Wasike’s daughter Sandrah Nasimiyu became the first person in her family to graduate high school in America. She may have wanted her dad to watch her walk across the stage at the Valley Senior, but her compelling speech at the graduation ceremony for sure made her daddy smile.
“I have been planning this graduation since my dad got hurt. I knew how I was going to get him here and how everything was going to work out,” Nasimiyu said.
Two suspects were sentenced to 50 years in prison in connection with Wasike’s murder.
“I spiraled in those five years engaging in destructive behavior, resulting from my anger. I couldn’t think clearly,” Nasimiyu said.
With the help of her family and her school, Nasimiyu says through failure, she was given a second chance. It is one that got her to where she is now: one of Valley High School’s commencement speakers.
“I was born in Nairobi, Kenya, and immigrated here with my family because I was dying from a serious heart disorder,” Nasimiyu said.
Her story struck a chord among a packed full Knapp Center.
“On February 26, 2013 when I was 12,” Nasimiyu pauses mid speech while trying to hold back tears. “My father was brutally carjacked and beaten with a gun and was left to die in the middle of a blizzard.”
“I lived in courtrooms and hospitals more than I ever did in a classroom,” Nasimiyu went on to say.
“I know I’m going to look out and I’m going to see him somewhere at some point,” Nasimiyu said.