Shurlie Horn, 62, walked the stage Saturday afternoon as she received her bachelors degree in social work from West Texas A&M. Her difficult road to graduation was chronicled in my column last Friday.
So, Shurlie, how was it?
"Oh, it was wonderful," she said. "It was everything and more."
"Miss Shurlie," as she is known to most, was part of Saturday afternoon's commencement. She had much of a sizable extended family at the First United Bank Center as well as many friends who helped her to get to that point.
Her husband, Sonny, held a surprise gathering at their church, New Covenant Missionary Baptist Church, afteward.
"Oh, it was a tear-jerker, I'll tell you," she said. "They all said something about me. We were all in tears."
One of several reasons that Miss Shurlie didn't give up in pursuit of her degree was to set an example to her family.
"One of my grandsons was a senior in college and he dropped out and he said, 'Granny, I'm going back,'" she said. "I had a nephew who flunked out of school after two semesters and he said he's going back. That's what it was all about."
And when Shurlie heard her name announced and walked to get her diploma?
"At first I didn't know which way to go," she said. "It was overwhelming."
That hard-earned diploma nows rests in a curio case in her home. Well done, Miss Shurlie, well done.