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World War II veteran receives high school diploma 71 years later

World War II Veteran Receives High School Diploma 71 Years Later


Each year more than 3 million high school students get their diplomas.

But this year, one 90-year-old man joined the millions of 2014 high school graduates. WTLV reports: "Jack Koolik bailed out of high school during World War II."

"What did not happen 71 years ago will happen on this stage where Koolik will get a diploma through the Veterans high school diploma program."

According to The Florida Times-Union, Koolik left his Brooklyn, New York, high school in 1942 to enlist in the U.S. Army Air Corps and was unable to get his diploma. But he didn't want the same thing for his daughters.

Bonnie Sandler, Koolik's eldest daughter who presented the diploma to her father, told The Florida Times-Union: "My dad sacrificed a lot and worked long, hard hours for us so we would have the opportunity to go to college and be successful."

Koolik's daughters helped arrange his graduation, and he told WJXT he appreciates their gesture.

"It's like a dream world. I can't believe that I'm up on the stage."

And Koolik looked thrilled on his graduation day. Koolik isn't the only veteran who's finally receiving his diploma.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, Charles Waters, an 88-year-old World War II veteran currently living in Florida, finally received a diploma from his Massachusetts high school 71 years later.

And WISH reports an Indiana man, 91-year-old Walter Worland, also a World War II veteran, received his diploma after 70 years.

Join the discussion

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ohiohikingstick June 04 2014 at 7:01 AM

Good Job, I salute you and thank you for your service and my freedoms !!!

Flag Reply +5 rate up
JOEM June 04 2014 at 8:08 AM

GOD BLESS THE SENIORS THAT BUILT THIS COUNTRY FROM NOTHING

Flag Reply +5 rate up
Sherry Lee June 04 2014 at 5:44 AM

Congratulations and thank you for your service.

Flag Reply +4 rate up
wclark8 June 04 2014 at 7:44 AM

The dear old boy deserves it

Flag Reply +4 rate up
Ed. June 04 2014 at 6:45 AM

Hey, give the guy credit for what he went throgh.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
alspoolhall June 04 2014 at 10:39 AM

Jack Koolik is cool.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
Postalpal June 04 2014 at 10:52 AM

I think this is cool. Maybe go for his batchelors next! Its doable, alot on line.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
fenwaypark9 June 04 2014 at 12:33 PM

At 92, and due to WWII. I was not able to go to college. Always wanted to. All my girls, grand daughters and eventually great grand daughters will. I haven't because I can't shake the feeling I may be taking the place of a young person and don't want to be selfish.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
1 reply
mclkarim fenwaypark9 June 04 2014 at 2:15 PM

Really? Oh, come now.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
jeannietaylor25 June 04 2014 at 6:14 PM

Good for him and congrats!! Thank You for your service. God Bless him

Flag Reply +1 rate up
jbarto2003 June 04 2014 at 6:32 AM

I GRADUATED FROM HIGH SCHOOL WITH MY GRADUATING CLASS - I WAS AWARDED THE BRONZE STAR, AIR MEDAL AND MOST IMPORTANT THE GOOD CONDUCT MEDAL WHILE SERVING MY COUNTRY IN VIETNAM. I GUESS I SHOULD HAVE WAITED UNTIL I AM 90 YEARS OLD AND I WILL GET STUFF THAT I DID NOT EARN - BULLSHIT - GOOD GESTURE BUT - BULLSHIT

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