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WATERTOWN, N.Y. — It took nearly eight decades, but Frederick Gray is finally a high school graduate.
The Watertown Daily Times reports that the 97-year-old World War II veteran was presented Monday with a diploma from Watertown High School during a ceremony at his home in northern New York.
Gray was set to graduate with Watertown High’s Class of 1934 but dropped out a year early to get a job to help support his family during the Great Depression.
Gray later returned home and worked in a factory before being drafted into the Army in 1942. He served in the 24th Infantry Division in the Pacific campaign, earning a Bronze Star.
After the war, he returned to his job and retired as head of the company’s billing department.
Gray said he never expected to get a diploma and is “dumbfounded by the thoughtfulness.”