Ann Colagiovanni had to leave school to work in her father's market during the Depression era of the 1930s, when working usually took priority over education.
Although she desperately wanted to graduate at the time, Ann put the needs of her family before her own, meaning that she has only now fulfilled her dream of graduating.
Her daughter Emilia informed Fox 8 Cleveland: "When I told her she was getting a diploma, she sobbed as if a pain had been relieved from her heart. I never knew what it meant to her. She wanted this."
She was the eldest member of the class of 2012, who received their diplomas at Shaker Heights High School in Ohio. Her name was printed on her certificate, dated June 1934.
Ann is not the only member of the family to graduate this year. Her grandson Thomas Vinci will receive his diploma from Cleveland high school the day after his grandmother receives hers.
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