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World War II Vet Finally Gets His Big Moment, Graduates High School Alongside His Great-Granddaughter At 99

WWII Vet Graduate

World War II vet Charles Bird finally got to wear his cap and gown and become a high school graduate alongside his great-granddaughter at age 99.

Charles, known as “Birdy” to his friends, was set to become a graduate when he was 18. But with war raging overseas, the U.S. Army drafted him before he could finish his classes. Over eight decades later, he was able to complete his coursework and earn his diploma thanks to Operation Recognition Program (ORP).

The former soldier, who served in the 131st AAA Gun Battalion of the U.S. Army as a Technician Fifth Grade, stood for a private graduation ceremony on March 15. His friends, family, and over 100 students gathered to celebrate his milestone. Then on May 18th, he experience the full Pomp and Circumstance during Clay County High School’s formal graduation in West Virginia.

World War II Vet’s Great-Granddaughter “Proud” To Be Among His Graduating Class

Fox News shared photos of the WWII vet wearing his blue cap and gown with his great-granddaughter, Ashdon Salisbury, by his side wearing matching attire.

“My classmates think that is a very cool and unique thing to happen at our graduation,” Ashdon told the publication.

“He worked so hard in life,” she continued. “And he is the most deserving person to be able to graduate at his age.”

After Charles Bird returned home in 1946, he joined the United Mine Workers labor union and worked in the coal mines for 38 years while he helped raise and support his family.

“Makes you feel like you’ve done something that’s worth something,” Charles told News 13 following his ceremony in March. “You know, it’s a privilege for me to graduate from this high school, and I really honor that. The creek I live on — Little Village — 39 of us went to the armed service and 38 of them are gone. I’m the only one left. It makes you wonder. But God’s been good for me down through life. I give him the credit for my age.

You can find the source of this story’s featured image here.

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