83-year-old Navy veteran earns high school diploma

At 83 years old, Monroe Murphy is still following his dreams, he’s just days away from receiving his high school diploma.{ }(Photo: WEYI/WSMH)

A Michigan man is proving it's never too late to finish what you started.

At 83 years old, Monroe Murphy is still following his dreams. He’s just days away from receiving his high school diploma.

"I would never have done this three or four years ago, you could not force me to do this,” says Murphy.

Murphy left high school in 1951 when he was 16 years old. He and his buddy decided to join the Navy.

"He signed us over and six weeks later we was in the great lakes in the Navy,” says Monroe

After serving four years he returned home, and started a family.

His love for learning never faded but it wasn't until he saw an ad for the Lapeer County Adult Education Program that he gave going back to school another thought.

"I haven't been in school in a long, long time you know 68 years or so,” says Murphy

With the help of his daughter, he enrolled. As no surprise, he was the oldest student in his class but he says his classmates kept him young.

"They took care of me and everybody was so interested in me making this. Sometimes I think more interested than I was. But they worked hard to make this happen,” says Murphy.

Instructor Mary Anne Martin describes him as inspiring, not just for the staff but the students too.

"When he walks into a classroom, he brings in experience, he brings in a light that the students actually are inspired as well,” says Martin.

Murphy says the journey has been challenging; the biggest challenge, technology.

"Oh no doubt it's the computer is the hardest part," Murphy said.

Murphy will walk across the stage on June 13th, and he's expecting a crowd of about 50 supporters.

He's even giving a graduation speech, but he's not stopping there.

Murphy plans to enroll in a college course soon.