It is never too late to graduate! Veterans, 95 and 85, donate more than 65 years after leaving school early to fight in World War II and the Korean War
- Joe Perricone, 95, and Bill William Arnold Craddock, 85, graduated on Saturday
- They joined the 2019 class when they picked up their degrees at their local high schools in Florida and Tennessee during graduation ceremonies.
- Perricone was called into the army in 1943, just a few months before his graduation
- He served in Europe during the following three years during the Second World War
- Craddock would have been in the class of 1953, but was a member of the Air Force from the age of 16
- He then served for eight years, during which time he received his GED
- Both men were honored and praised during their graduation ceremonies
Two war veterans finally had the chance to celebrate their final exams, more than 65 years after they had done it if they had not entered the military service as teenagers.
On Saturday, Joe Perricone, 95, from Florida, and Bill William Arnold Craddock, 85, from Tennessee donated graduation attire and walked through their respective high school phases to get degrees & # 39; s alongside regular 2019 classmates.
Perricone, dressed in a bright orange dress and matching mortar board cap, made the walk 76 years after he would have graduated from Tampa, Florida Hillsborough High School, he was not a senior when he was summoned to the army in February 1943, according to WFLA.
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Veteran Joe Perricone from World War II, 95, joined the 2019 class when he received his high school diploma at a ceremony on Saturday, 76 years after he would have graduated if he had not studied in the army
Bill William Arnold Craddock, 85, also joined the 2019 class when he graduated during a graduation ceremony, 66 years after joining the Air Force at 16 and served in the Korean War
While Perricone received his high school diploma when he returned from fighting in Europe during World War II in 1946, he never had the opportunity to participate in an official graduation ceremony until Saturday.
During the ceremony, school officials paid a tribute to Perricone, who was then given a standing ovation by teachers and students. Later, when he walked across the stage to receive his diploma, he was loudly welcomed by the crowd.
Perricone's grandson, Judge Thomas Palermo, is said to have collaborated with the school board and high school director, Gary Brady, to complete Perricone's participation in the graduation ceremony.
In the meantime, a similar story played away several states.
During Perricone's graduation ceremony, this photo of the man flashed on stage alongside his army friends. However, it is unclear which of the Perricone men is
Both Perricone (left) and Craddock (right) received loud applause and applause from students and the public when they handed over their degree & # 39; s Saturday
Craddock was 16 and attended Science Hill High School in Johnson City, Tennessee, when he joined the Air Force and started fighting in the Korean War, according to WJHL.
If he stayed behind to finish his diploma, he would have graduated with his classmates in 1953.
Although he received his GED during his nearly eight years in the Air Force, he was unable to participate in a real graduation ceremony until Saturday, when he joined the 2019 class at the Volunteer High School in Church Hill, Tennessee.
After he was welcomed and introduced on stage, Craddock received loud applause when he received his diploma, 66 years after he had had to pick it up.
& # 39; I'm itching that I went through this to get this. I have seen all the people and they have given me a good feeling, & Craddock told the news station.
When asked if he had advice for his fellow graduation course, Craddock said: & I would like to say that class to study hard and be good. Learn everything they can and get the best education they can get. & # 39;
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