Here at The Pool we very much take the view that old ladies are remarkable.
Consider 101-year-old Flossie Dickey who still relies strongly on a nap and whiskey to deal with life. Or 100-year old Felimina who still works six days a week, from 7am to 6pm, in a New York laundrette. Or 87-year old Daphne Selfe who still models or 92-year old Joy Lofthouse who is still flying spitfires or 81-year Gloria Steinem who is still leading peaceful protests and writing books. We want to be these women when we grow up – full of energy and fun and doing precisely what they want to do.
And now we are adding Dorothy Liggett of Ohio to our list of ROLS (Remarkable Old Ladies) for achieving a dream she never thought she’d get the opportunity to – at the age of 93.
Dorothy’s daughter Janice told a local news station that not receiving her diploma had been her mother’s one big regret in her life
Dorothy Liggett was months away from receiving her high school diploma in 1942 when she was expelled after it was discovered she was married. At that time, married students were banned from graduating. As a result, Dorothy left school and went on to have five children with her husband. Dorothy’s daughter Janice told a local news station that not receiving her diploma had been her mother’s one big regret in her life.
And so on this year, for her birthday, Dorothy’s daughter wrote a letter to the local council explaining the situation and in response Akron Public Schools Superintendent David James visited Dorothy’s home and presented her with a high school diploma, 74 years later.
Dorothy was moved to tears. Her son said, “Her one regret is no longer a regret. It is a fulfilled ambition”. Dorothy said, “This is the most wonderful gift I have ever had”.
Because that’s the other remarkable things about old ladies. They’ve not only got unfathomable energy levels, but they’ve been through more than we can imagine. They’ve lived through wars and they’ve lived through times that deemed married women unworthy of an education. And what is so heartwarming about Dorothy’s story is that she never gave up on her ambition, even when the system had given up on her.