With the school year starting, some parents are experiencing one of life’s most bittersweet moments: leaving their children at college. The complication emotions must be so intense! The pride, the fear, the sadness, the excitement. There aren’t many kids who grasp this, which is why this sweet tribute from a son to his father really tugged on my heart. From kindergarten to college, the first day of school is one of the best photo opportunities.

Charles Brockman III’s father has walked him to the first day of school every day for the last thirteen years. This year, the younger Charles is heading off to Mississippi State. His dad, Charles Brockman II, walked him into the dorm. Young Charles posted this ridiculously cute side-by-side photo on Twitter as a tribute to his father.

“From the first day of Kindergarten to college move in. Thank you dad,” Charles the third wrote.

I’m not crying. You’re crying.

The tweet has racked up over 275,000 likes and almost 70,000 retweets. And oh, the replies. Twitter can’t take it.

Charles’ mom even got in on the action, tweeting her pride in her husband and son.

Charles, who is an only child, is at Mississippi State this week with his parents for freshmen orientation. The new student told The Today Show that he is stunned by the reaction his tweets have received.

“I thought maybe my friends would like it and retweet it, but I was not expecting this at all,” he said. Brockman’s dad was his personal track coach all through high school, and he wanted to make sure his dad got the props he deserved. “Sometimes fathers don’t get enough credit so I just had to pay it forward to him and thank him for all the years he’s been there for me.”

charles brockman II and III

Image: Twitter / @TheOnlyCharlesB

Their son’s gratitude comes as no surprise to his parents.

“At track meets, a lot of times I’ve seen parents go up to their kids or sons and be told, ‘Don’t touch me. Don’t hug me in public.’ And he hugs me. We tell each other we love each other all the time,” the senior Brockman said. “I’m so proud of him. He’s a really good kid, a really good student.”

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(Image: Twitter / @TheOnlyCharlesB)