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Huntsville Woman Turns 100, Graduates High School

By Associated Press

Huntsville AL – A woman who led a full life on the West Coast after dropping out of school received an honorary high school diploma at her 100th birthday party.

Dozens of Elva Cook's relatives from as far away as Washington, Oregon and California came to Ivey's Restaurant to wish her a happy birthday and attend her graduation ceremony Sunday.

Huntsville City Council President Glenn Watson read a resolution congratulating Cook, who accepted the diploma from William Winlock Miller High School in Olympia, Wash. She quit attending the one-room school in 1925 with her best friend and another classmate.

"We thought we knew more than the teachers, so we stopped going," Cook said. "We wanted to sleep in. We were having so much fun."

She spoke about her preferred pastimes, which included talking to friends and going out with boys.

"When people are young, they do stupid things," Cook told her nephew.

Family members said she helped around the family farm as a teenager and ran off to Reno, Nev., to marry Vivien Cook several years later. His death in 1997 ended their 67-year marriage.

"I married the right man," she said.

Cook, who raised two daughters, moved to Huntsville to be close to one of them in February.

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Information from: The Huntsville Times, http://www.al.com/hsvtimes/hsv.html

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