The Springdale School District in Springdale, Arkansas insisted on issuing high school diplomas to four veterans who left the school to serve during the Korean War and beyond in the 1950s.It was meant to be a “surprise” for the 2022 graduating class and to send a message to students about “honor” and “respect,” according to the superintendent.
But instead of the 2022 graduation ceremony focusing on the accomplishments of the 500 students in the senior class of 2022, the “super seniors” who joined the class as honorary graduating members garnered much of the attention.The school’s superintendent Jared Cleveland read letters from the state’s governor and a congressman who went on about the selflessness of their decision to serve in the military.
“I took a GED test when I went into the Air Force and at the time, Springdale didn’t recognize the GED test,” Self told 5 News Online “I got a diploma from Little Rock Central.”
Self said his experience wasn’t exactly what he thought it would be.
“I don’t want people telling me what to do and I’m like okay, I joined the Air Force,” Self said. “But about two days after I got there, they were really telling me what to do”
But now Self, who served in the Air Force, has an actual diploma from the school which he attended.
“Recently, Dr Jared Cleveland, the superintendent of Springdale, decided these men needed their diploma from their Alma Mater. So today, these guys walked at SHS graduation and got their diplomas. So special!” Self’s daughter, Brenda Self Embry wrote on Facebook.
Springdale educators apparently learned about the story of the veterans without official Springdale School District diplomas during the veterans’ monthly lunch at the Wagon Wheel Café.
During their graduation, students also learned about the veterans’ accomplishments such as owning a successful business, working in the poultry industry, and raising racehorses.
According to comments made on the Springdale School District’s Facebook page, Moon got his diploma on the same day as his granddaughter, a senior in the class of 2022.
According to National Geographic, the U.S. enter the Korean War in 1950.
The Korean War was fought between North Korea and South Korea from 1950 to 1953.
The U.S. supported the Republic of Korea, a.k.a. South Korea, who was fighting off an invasion from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, a.k.a. North Korea.
“The West—the United Kingdom and the U.S., supported by the United Nations—supported South Korea, while communist China and the Soviet Union supported North Korea. The Korean War ended three years later, with millions of casualties. The war ended with virtually no change in the border. The Korean Peninsula is still divided, with military personnel from both North and South Korea occupying the demilitarized zone (DMZ),” National Geographic says.
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Carl Stults, Bobby Burke, Charles Leroy Moon, and Bob Self dropped out in the 1950s to join the military instead.
Self actually has his diploma but it was issued from Little Rock Central instead of Springdale High School.