MADISON COUNTY, Ala. — Grace Lee McClure Smith obtained her diploma from Hazel Inexperienced Excessive Faculty in a particular ceremony on Wednesday.
With the commencement season coming to a detailed, Madison County Colleges wished to honor only one extra graduate. After 79 years, Smith is ready to transfer her tassel from one facet to the opposite.
Officers from Madison County Colleges together with Director of PR Tim Corridor, Hazel Inexperienced principal Quinn Headen, and superintendent Allen Perkins confirmed their appreciation for Grace Smith throughout a private ceremony.
On June 2, 2021, Grace grew to become Madison County’s oldest highschool graduate ever. At 94 years previous, she walked throughout the Hazel Inexperienced stage to get her diploma.
“It’s higher late than by no means, isn’t it?” stated Grace.
In 1942, Smith dropped out of Hazel Inexperienced Excessive Faculty at 16 years previous to marry her sweetheart, who went to struggle in World Conflict II shortly thereafter.
However that didn’t preserve her from the Madison County Faculty System.
“She got here again and for greater than 30 years, she drove a faculty bus in Madison County, she served our college students and received them safely to high school and safely house for 30 years,” stated Tim Corridor.
“Rising up once I was at school, I really rode her bus to and from faculty,” stated Erin Wilson, who’s Grace’s granddaughter, a trainer at Legacy Elementary Faculty, and the mastermind behind the commencement ceremony.
“She was a task mannequin for lots of children and he or she’s all the time telling the tales,” stated Wilson. “She could not bear in mind faces, however she’s going to bear in mind names and addresses of the place she picked them up and dropped them off.”
After years of service, and a lifetime of giving again, Madison County was in a position to give one thing again to Grace.
“I really feel like I don’t deserve it,” she stated. “There’s much more individuals which can be far more deserving than me. I’m simply doing my job, like it. I like most of it more often than not. Good instances!”
Grace isn’t solely leaving a legacy with Madison County Colleges. She has many extra legacies… 49 to be precise. Her sister tells Information 19 that Grace as 7 youngsters, 16 grandchildren, and 26 nice grandchildren.
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