When America was in the thick of World War 2, young Milton Mockerman heard his country's call. He dropped out of high school, forged his birth certificate and joined the Navy. For two and a half years he fought the Nazis and the empire of Japan, helping the allies to victory.
"Everybody my age was engulfed in a war. It was a war to survive, everybody that could was serving," Mockerman told ABC news.
When he came home he found that being a war hero didn't exactly pay the bills. Under-educated, and with few others to call on, Mockerman hit the streets looking for work. He eventually found it, working on the railroad for over 30 years.
It was a good job that kept a roof over his head and put food on his family's table, but there was always something missing. Mockerman wanted to complete his education, but could never afford the time away from work, or the tuition costs. At a certain point he felt it would be impossible to cross the stage as a high school graduate.
He was wrong.
See how Mockerman got his diploma on the next page!