(CNN) — A World War II veteran from Claremore, Oklahoma gets a long-overdue honor.
Lewis Shaw, 95, left high school early to enlist in the Marine Corps in 1943.
He was quickly drafted into World War II.
Now, nearly 80 years later, Shaw, is receiving a high school diploma.
All of Claremore High School gave him a standing ovation and the pomp and circumstance of a real graduation Thursday night.
“I knew I was going to get the diploma, but I had no idea I was going to get such a turnout of people,” Shaw said.
The graduation ceremony for Shaw is fitting as Veterans Day is on Monday.
“As we approach Veterans Day, I think it’s important the students understand that freedom doesn’t come free,” said Bryan Frazier, Superintendent Claremore Public Schools.
The day was made possible thanks to a law passed in 2001 that allows districts to award veterans of World War II and Korea their diplomas.
Shaw will also serve as Grand Marshall of the Tulsa Veterans Day Parade on Monday.