Signed and delivered Vermillion School Board President Tom Craig (right) presents Lloyd Sorenson with his high school diploma during the reunion of Vermillion High School's class of 1965 Saturday night at the Buffalo Run Winery. by David Lias In the spring of 1965, members of the senior class at VHS were enjoying prom and celebrating the end of four years of high school with a trip to Omaha, NE.
Except for Lloyd Sorenson.
�He put the needs of his country before his own personal needs and the needs of his family,� Vermillion School Board President Tom Craig said.
Sorenson, who today resides with his wife in Sioux City, IA, left VHS in January 1964 to enlist in the U.S. Navy. He served on a U.S. carrier off
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the coast of Vietnam during the war there, and also served in the Pentagon before being honorably discharged in January 1970.
The South Dakota Legislature has recently given school boards the authority to recognize students who left school early to serve in Vietnam.
�The local school boards are authorized to present them with their high school diplomas,� Craig said.
As a stunned Sorenson received his certificate, his classmates cheered loudly. Many couldn�t hold back tears.
Family members who had been hiding outside the winery streamed inside to witness the presentation.
Two of Sorenson�s sisters � Emma Drissen and Bonnie Sorenson, both of Vermillion � added to the event by giving their brother a special gift from the family: a 1965 Vermillion High School class ring.