LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — 65 years after the rest of his high school class graduated, Korean War veteran Al Seaberry received his.
Halfway through his senior year at Huntington Beach High, Seaberry joined the Navy and fought in the Korean War.
His wife of 64 years graduated without him.
Four months ago, the Huntington Beach School District began searching for veterans to retroactively hand out diplomas.
Friday at halftime of his alma mater’s football game, Seaberry was officially made a Huntington Beach High Oiler, with an honorary degree.
“It’s a completion, an honor, and I hope an encouragement for any other kid that might have slipped out of school,” Seaberry said.
“He’s always encouraged us to stay in school. I’m just so happy,” his daughter Susan Coleman said.
His granddaughter, Karen Coleman, was also in attendance.
“I’m very proud of him … proves to us you never give up on your dreams,” Karen Coleman said.
“I didn’t dream it would be anything like this, my God! I thought they’d mail me a diploma!” Seaberry added.
“He’s a hero. He’s supported us through everything. Being there in every situation, he has really sacrificed for us, our family and for our country,” his other granddaughter Kelsey Coleman said.