99-year-old woman finally receives high school diploma

Sept. 25, 2013 at 1:17 PM

WATERLOO, Iowa, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- A 99-year-old Iowa woman who dropped out of school as a senior in 1932 was presented with an honorary diploma by the principal of the high school she attended.

Audrey Crabtree, 99, dropped out of East High School in Waterloo as a senior in 1932 after missing part of the year due to an injury and serving as a caretaker for her ailing grandmother, the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reported Wednesday.

"She had voiced quite a while back the one regret she had in life was that she never had gotten her diploma," said Shelley Hoffman, Crabtree's granddaughter.

Hoffman approached Waterloo Community Schools officials about honoring her grandmother, and Crabtree was presented with an honorary diploma Monday by East High Principal Marla Padget at a ceremony also attended by Superintendent Gary Norris and members of the Board of Education.

Padget also presented Crabtree with a copy of her last report card from the school.

"And I feel so much smarter," Crabtree joked after receiving her diploma.

Bernice Richard, the board's vice president, said Crabtree's "business experience" assured officials that she was worthy of her diploma. Crabtree owned and operated her own business, Flowers by Audrey, for 28 years.

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