TORONTO – A World War II veteran who dropped out of high school 70 years ago to serve her country received her high school diploma on Friday.
Rosalie Kone, 91, stood proudly at the Windsor Locks High School graduation in Connecticut and waved at a cheering crowd as she received her diploma.
In 1944, Kone left high school to follow her brothers already fighting overseas and served in the Women’s Army Corp for two years, becoming Private First Class Rosalie Kone.
“I drove a truck all over the country,” Kone told NBC News. “Wherever the supplies were needed, that’s where I went.”
Serving in Germany, England, and France, Kone earned several medals, including three bronze stars.
When she returned home from the war she found she was unable to graduate from high school.
An anonymous call to the Windsor Locks superintendent rectified that with an honourary diploma that coincides with the recent 70th anniversary of D-Day.
“Is there a better example that learning is constant and time is a variable than Rosalie Kone? I don’t think so,” said Superintendent Wayne Sweeney.
A great-grandmother of three, Kone walked with a cane to the graduation stage in front of her family and a standing ovation from the crowd.
Kone said she hopes her story inspires others to work hard and never take anything for granted.
“You just have to get out and push because no one is going to hand out anything to you because, like I said, if anybody knows, I do.”
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