BUENA VISTA, Ga. – One Buena Vista man is proving that it’s never too late to give up on a dream. 98-year-old Roosevelt Jackson received an honorary high school diploma from Marion County High School Thursday.
“A great, great time of my life. Getting my diploma at 98,” Jackson said.
Just two years shy of the century mark, Jackson shares his story with students in hopes of inspiring them.
“I’m the grandson of a slave,” he said.
Jackson considers a high school diploma to be a lifeline.
“That’s why I go around to schools telling children make sure to get a good education because education is like a rainbow. It don’t have no end,” Jackson explained.
Yolanda Sewell with the literacy alliance says she is very proud of Jackson.
“Mr. Jackson has always talked about the importance of education. He did not get the opportunity to finish high school. Now he gets an honorary degree. He tells the children all the time to learn and to read,” Sewell said.
A Marion County student referred to Jackson as a ‘living legend’ when she introduced him Thursday evening.
“You don’t ever know what God has planned to you. It seems like the older I get, the better things get for me so, that gives the young people something to think about,” Jackson said.
Jackson played baseball for numerous teams in the Negro leagues and has been recognized across the country. He is the oldest living scout, manager, and former player from that league.
Jackson will turn 99-years-old this fall.