Selflessness defines recipient of honorary diploma
May 26, 2021
Harry Hauri continues to spend his life giving to others selflessly. The 93-year-old served in the United States Army as a paratrooper, donates to the hungry, does Meals on Wheels in Rock County, and he worked closely with Rotary Gardens in Janesville to create the memorial path for fallen soldiers called Where Tears Run Deep. He was also a farmer, factory worker and father to 14 children. Now he’s adding high school graduate to his list of accomplishments.
“I’m excited to receive this diploma because I couldn’t go to high school back then,” Hauri said.
Hauri was needed on the 360-acre family dairy farm back in the years when he would have attended high school. Back then his eighth-grade teacher offered to let him stay with her so he could attend high school. There were no buses outside city limits at that time so even if he wasn’t needed on the farm, he would have been forced to walk quite a distance each day to attend classes.
“My teacher up there can smile now because I’m getting this diploma,” Hauri said, pointing to the sky. “I’m happy for my teacher.”
Parkview School District sent Hauri a letter to inform him the district would like to honor him with a diploma. During graduation on May 28, he will be escorted to the stage by three of his great-grandchildren who currently attend school in Parkview.
“We are committed to the entire Parkview community,” said Mary Stelter, Parkview Jr./Sr. High School principal. “One of the pillars of our district strategic plan is, ‘Community and Family Engagement;’ by recognizing Harry for his contributions to our community, we are honoring our commitment to this pillar. He has lived and raised his family in this community- what a great way for us to say thank you for supporting Parkview all these years!”
Superintendent Steve Lutzke agreed with Stelter, saying the district felt compelled to honor Hauri after learning of his positive life accomplishments earlier this year. Serving his country and being an involved community member makes Hauri a great recipient of this honorary diploma, Lutzke said.
“Mr. Hauri was raised during an era much different from the present day,” he said. “Despite being unable to attend high school, Mr. Hauri persevered and led a very successful life. Active duty in WWII, working hard his whole life as a farmer and laborer, and donating much of his hard-earned income to support others provided many life lessons that make him worthy of this honorary diploma.”
Hauri’s children and grandchildren are also proud of his accomplishments and the life lessons they’ve learned from him. But most of all, they’re proud of his kindness to others, said his grandson Arthur Hauri, Jr., 35, of Beloit.
“My grandpa has displayed more than a lifetime’s worth of selfless acts,” he said. “He has risked his life defending our country as a teenager, volunteered many hours supporting families of our fallen heroes, and to this day, is still finding ways to help feed the hungry. These are just a few acts of kindness that make him such a great role model – and this honorary graduate – all the more deserving.”