Updated: 06/18/2014 6:57 PM |
Created: 06/18/2014 6:50 PM
By: Jorge Torres, KOB Eyewitness News 4
Dennis Baca has lived a full life. Besides serving our country, he worked for the Albuquerque VA, has nine children and dozens of grandkids. In other words, he had almost everything, except for one thing.
He was six months away from graduating Albuquerque High School, but everything changed for Dennis and America on December 7th, 1941.
He got the call to serve his country and he did proudly with the Infantry in the Pacific Theater. He made it home in '45, but some of brothers-in-arms never made the trip back.
"That's one thing you don't forget. What happened to everyone. We went through a lot," Baca said emotionally. "They called me to serve for my country and I was proud to have served my country"
73 years later Baca can finally add "graduate" to his resume, something that he and his family have been waiting for, including his son, who flew in from Bakersfield for the great occasion.
"Myself, my children, my grandchildren, live free for what he did. 73 years later he's going get to walk across the stage and i think he deserves it. He's worked hard for it and he's earned it," Tony Baca said regarding his father, a member of the Greatest Generation.
Today, he was finally able to walk the stage at APS headquarters with his cap and gown and diploma in hand. Much of his big family was also present to celebrate the amazing achievement.