When the Springdale School District celebrated the Class of 2022, they didn’t just honor the graduating seniors. They also recognized four remarkable individuals who would have graduated in 1956 if they hadn’t answered the call of duty and joined the military. Carl Stults, Bobby Burke, Charles Leroy Moon, and Bob Self, affectionately known as the “super seniors,” were finally presented with honorary diplomas alongside the 484 graduating seniors from Springdale High School.

Back in 1956, these four men were high school seniors like any other. However, circumstances prevented them from receiving their diplomas from Springdale High. “I took a GED test when I went into the Air Force, and at the time, Springdale didn’t recognize the GED test,” explained Bob Self. “I got a diploma from Little Rock Central instead.” Unfortunately, it wasn’t until recently that the school district discovered their oversight when they encountered the veterans enjoying lunch one day.

The inclusion of the super seniors came as a surprise to the graduating class, but it also came with an important lesson. Springdale Superintendent Jared Cleveland took the opportunity to read letters from Governor Asa Hutchinson and U.S. Representative Steve Womack during the ceremony. Rep. Womack wrote, “They served during the time of the Korean conflict and beyond. At that time, they didn’t think about themselves, they didn’t think, ‘What about me?’ They answered the call of duty. Is that not the truest spirit of America?”

As part of the ceremony, educators highlighted each veteran’s notable accomplishments since joining the Air Force in 1956. These four men may have waited 66 years to receive their diplomas from their alma mater, but the recognition is well-deserved. It’s a testament to their dedication and service to their country.

Let’s all congratulate these incredible veterans and extend our heartfelt gratitude for their selfless sacrifices. It’s because of individuals like them that we have the privilege of living in the extraordinary country we cherish today.

Once a Bulldog, Always a Bulldog!

Congratulations to all four veterans, and thank you for your service! It is because of people like you that we are able to live in the country we live in today. Please share and congratulate these men on their accomplishments and thank them for their sacrifices.