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84-year-old man receives high school diploma in Mississippi
Jun 05

PORT GIBSON, Miss. (AP) _ An 84-year-old Mississippi man wore a cap and gown and walked across a stage to pick up his high school diploma, generations after bureaucratic mistakes prevented him from receiving it.

Jerry Moon joined 94 graduates during commencement May 28 at Port Gibson High School, WLBT-TV reported.

``It's just unbelievable,'' Moon said. ``I'm just so thrilled. I don't know what to do.''

In early 1958, Moon was in the Army when he passed an exam to earn his high school equivalency certificate. However, Moon said he didn't receive a signed copy immediately because the Army misplaced it.

After Moon was discharged and returned to Mississippi, his certificate arrived by mail in October 1958. He asked the high school principal for a diploma, only to learn the certificate was missing a required signature from his company commander.

An Army National Guard major signed the paperwork this year. Moon called Port Gibson High School principal Kelvin Fuller, who agreed to honor his request for a diploma.

``It's emotional for me because this is my first time ever doing anything of this nature, so I just wanted him and his family to be excited and be happy,`` Fuller said.

Moon's family attended his graduation, and he carried a photo of his late wife.

``All of his life he's been trying to get this diploma in his hands,`` said his son, Darryl Moon. ``He never gave up on it.``

By The Associated Press, Copyright 2021

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