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93 Y.O. Virginia Woman Gets Diploma 75 Years After She Was Forced To Quit High School
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93 Y.O. Virginia Woman Gets Diploma 75 Years After She Was Forced To Quit High School

While today it may sound quite odd to hear that someone hasn’t finished college or even high school, it’s not so uncommon when it comes to previous generations, especially the ones from the early 1900s and before.

A 93-year-old senior citizen from Centerville, Virginia named Eileen Delaney was one of many people to not finish high school back in her day. However, this has recently changed. For her 93rd birthday around a week ago, she received a bit of a surprise—a gift in the form of a high school diploma from the school she attended and quit 75 years ago.

Meet Eileen Delaney, who had just recently got her high school diploma for her 93rd birthday

Image credits: Maureen Delaney

So, 93-year-old Eileen Delaney has finally received her high school diploma from Port Richmond High School in Staten Island, New York—the school she had attended 75 years ago and was unfortunately forced to quit so that she could get a full-time job which would help pay the bills.

You see, Eileen’s mother passed away when she was but 12 years old. Her father remarried when she was 14. Making ends meet was hard, so she got a job at the New York Telephone Company—a job she quite enjoyed. And she might not have graduated school back then, but she kept in touch with all of her friends there.

She received her diploma from the Port Richmond High School in NYC 75 years after quitting it

Image credits: Maureen Delaney

In light of this, Eileen’s daughter, Maureen, decided to make her 93rd birthday a bit more special. She rallied up the entire family as well as friends from all over to send Eileen birthday cards—of which she received hundreds. When you have friends all over, plus 6 children, 8 grandchildren, and 5 great-grandchildren, you know there’s gonna be a lot of congratulating.

They explained that the mailman came over and started asking who all these people were sending her birthday greeting cards, jesting that they themselves don’t know that many people, and here are all these cards! The entire family put a lot of time and effort into this, and the surprise worked.

Eileen was forced to quit by her stepmother so that she could get a job and help the family make ends meet

Image credits: Maureen Delaney

However, this wasn’t the only thing Eileen got on her birthday. The cards were only a warm-up. Eileen’s niece got in touch with the principal of Port Richmond High School, the school Eileen attended 75 years ago, as well as the alumni association, which Eileen was a part of throughout the years, and managed to get her a high school diploma from the class of 1945.

Needless to say, Eileen was absolutely surprised—she never would have guessed that she’d get a diploma for her birthday, let alone her 93rd! It has been 75 years since she left school, after all.

After getting a job at the New York Telephone Company, she never returned to finish high school

Image credits: Maureen Delaney

The family set up a Zoom call with her to execute the surprise. Maureen explained that it has been a while since they’ve been together because of the pandemic, hence the Zoom call, but explained that Eileen is an amazing person and that the family wanted to make her smile. And smile she did!

“It was a way to add a happy ending to what had been a difficult part of her life,” Maureen explained to People about surprising her mother with the high school diploma.

Eileenwas was super surprised as this was all her family’s doing—they got in touch with the school and the alumni club and asked them to issue her the diploma

Image credits: Maureen Delaney

Eileen’s story went viral on the internet, making news headlines left and right. And, as it turns out, she isn’t the only one to receive a high school diploma as another senior citizen, Jane Pickett, also 93 years old and also from Virginia, received her high school diploma recently as well.

What are your thoughts on this? What do you plan to do when you’re 93 years old? Let us know in the comment section below!

Here’s how people on the internet reacted to this wholesome story

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Viv Hart
Community Member
1 year ago

I thought she'd studied for that Diploma!

El Dee
Community Member
1 year ago

God, doesn't she look great? And her husband was so handsome in the pics too!! Her circumstances were commonplace back then. My grandparents all left school aged 10yrs to start working and my parents at aged 14yrs. I managed to 'stay on' til I was 16yrs old!! Lol!

Little Dino
Community Member
1 year ago

Yay, congrats! This was a lovely story :)

Viv Hart
Community Member
1 year ago

I thought she'd studied for that Diploma!

El Dee
Community Member
1 year ago

God, doesn't she look great? And her husband was so handsome in the pics too!! Her circumstances were commonplace back then. My grandparents all left school aged 10yrs to start working and my parents at aged 14yrs. I managed to 'stay on' til I was 16yrs old!! Lol!

Little Dino
Community Member
1 year ago

Yay, congrats! This was a lovely story :)

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