102-year-old Rochester man honored with high school diploma

ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) - A 102-year-old Rochester man can finally call himself a high school graduate.

Leon Swendsen received an honorary diploma Tuesday from Rochester Public Schools, in a ceremony that saw him don a cap and gown and march to the front of the room while a small student orchestra played the traditional graduation song "Pomp and Circumstance."

The Rochester Post Bulletin reports that Swendsen left high school when he was 16 to help out on the family farm near Culver, about 30 minutes northwest of Duluth. He became a truck driver when he turned 18 and eventually worked as a Greyhound bus driver for 37 years.

The World War II veteran moved to Rochester about 20 years ago to be near family.

Swendsen says the honor "affects me more than anything."

© 2017 Associated Press


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