He left high school to fight in Vietnam—now this 78-year-old vet finally gets his diploma

The lives of the soldiers participating in a war are always sacrificed. That was especially true during the Vietnam War, when young men were conscripted into the military and sent to fight, placing their families and careers on hold.

It left certain aspirations unmet for many veterans, but as one example demonstrates, it's never too late in life to follow your long-held ambitions.

Floyd Covey, who is now 78 years old, was recruited into the Vietnam War when he was a young man—so young that he didn't even have time to complete high school before leaving for the war zone.

Covey served in the Army throughout the conflict and was honored with the Purple Heart for valor. He never did, however, finish high school after returning to civilian life, which he said constantly saddened his mother.

According to the website of the Martinsburg VA Medical Center in West Virginia, Covey recently shared this sorrow to a staff member who urged him to go earn his education.

That's exactly what he accomplished, with assistance from the West Virginia Department of Veterans Assistance. Even if he is roughly 60 years older than the typical graduation age, it's better to graduate now than never.

He was finally qualified for a diploma, and the Upshur County Board of Education sent an invitation to him to attend their high school graduation in May. Covey regrettably was unable to attend due to a medical issue.

But the VA center chose to host a graduation ceremony for him of their own rather than let his big day pass unnoticed.

Veterans, including Covey's brother and other VAMC staff members, were present during the event.

The superintendent and assistant superintendent of Upshur County Schools, respectively Dr. Sara Stankus and Dr. Deb Harrison, attended the event to present Covey with his long-awaited graduation.

According to the Martinsburg VA, Stankus said that he was unable to graduate at a point in his life when others were able to. "It is our delight to present his meritorious certificate."

Covey received a cake created by Nutrition and Food Service employee Tyray Goerke to commemorate the event.

All of Covey's thoughts ultimately turned to the lady who served as his inspiration. "This would mean everything to my Mom," he told the audience.

Simply said, it proves that you can follow your goals at any age and that even seemingly insignificant actions may have a significant impact.

Timothy J. Cooke, director of the medical center, remarked, "Today really illustrates that no gesture is too little to assist make a difference in our Veterans' life." "I'm happy we were all able to join together to make Mr. Covey's day memorable."
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