Kit Steinkellner
Updated May 10, 2015 9:20 am

We’ve all heard of a “gap year,” taking a year between high school and college, or a little time away from college in the middle of earning a degree, but Anthony Brutto, who began college in 1939, ended up taking a whopping 75 years to complete his degree at West Virginia University.

As TIME reports, shortly after enrolling in WVU, where he studied engineering, physical education, and industrial arts, the US entered WWII. Brutto was drafted and ended up serving in the Army Air Corps repairing aircrafts. He returned to school in 1946, but once again had to leave, this time to take care of his ill wife.

He worked in factories as a machinist through the 1980’s, and upon his retirement, devoted his attentions to wood sculpting, transforming his hobby into a full-time occupation.

Brutto is thrilled to finally have completed his WVU degree.

“It was always important to me to graduate,” he said in the university’s press release.

He laughed when asked if he planned on pursuing a master’s degree.

“No. I think I’ll take a break for a while,” he said.

Congratulations to Anthony Brutto on your degree, and thank you for reminding us all that it’s never too late to pick back up where we left off and make our dreams a reality.