AL grandmother, 75, graduates from college while battling cancer - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

AL grandmother, 75, graduates from college while battling cancer

Annie Watts walked across the graduation state at the Von Braun Center on may 11, 2018. (Source: WAFF) Annie Watts walked across the graduation state at the Von Braun Center on may 11, 2018. (Source: WAFF)
(Source: WAFF) (Source: WAFF)
Annie Watts (Source: Family) Annie Watts (Source: Family)
HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

It's a story of perseverance and triumph. The Friday night graduation at Drake State Community and Technical College was three-quarters of a century in the making for one special grad.

"I never even dreamed I would be here. It wasn't even my focus that I would be doing what I'm doing now,” an overwhelmed Annie Watts said.

She is a 75-year-old grandmother who walked across the stage Friday and got her associate degree.

"I was always told that I couldn't learn anything. It don't make you feel good when people tell you that you're dumb, ignorant, and that you wouldn't learn anything. It don't make you feel good when I knew in my mind that I could learn just like anybody else can,” Watts said.

Life wasn’t always easy for her. To escape a violent household, she dropped out of school in just seventh grade.

"If you don't try, you'll fail. If you don't try at it, how do you know you can't do it? See, I said I'm going to go back,” Watts passionately added.

At 70 years old she got her GED. Five years later, she got her associate degree.

Believe it or not, she did it all while battling cancer.

Her cap reads, "I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me,” her favorite Bible verse.

When her name was called, a roaring applause filled the Von Braun Center.

Watts believes that through her story, others will be inspired. No matter what happens in life, no matter how old or young you are, she says to never, ever give up.

"God is going to show you what he can do. He's gonna make believers out of you all. I feel whatever you are doing just keep doing it, I am,” she said.

The president of the institution presented her with a special honor of completion.

For now, she plans to tutor whoever needs her help.

The good news is she is in remission for her cancer.

Copyright 2018 WAFF. All rights reserved.

Report an Error | Submit a Tip to WAFF 48

  • NewsMore>>

  • Toll rises to 42 in Italy bridge collapse ahead of funerals

    Toll rises to 42 in Italy bridge collapse ahead of funerals

    Saturday, August 18 2018 4:10 AM EDT2018-08-18 08:10:33 GMT
    Saturday, August 18 2018 6:48 AM EDT2018-08-18 10:48:48 GMT
    (Luca Zennaro/ANSA via AP). Firefighters remove debris of the collapsed Morandi highway bridge in Genoa, Italy, Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018. Italian authorities have lowered the death to 38 from 39 in the collapse of a highway bridge in Genoa. Genoa Prefec...(Luca Zennaro/ANSA via AP). Firefighters remove debris of the collapsed Morandi highway bridge in Genoa, Italy, Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018. Italian authorities have lowered the death to 38 from 39 in the collapse of a highway bridge in Genoa. Genoa Prefec...

    Italian media say three more bodies have been found in the rubble of the Genoa bridge collapse, raising the death toll to 41.

    More >>

    Italian media say three more bodies have been found in the rubble of the Genoa bridge collapse, raising the death toll to 41.

    More >>
  • Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan dies at age 80

    Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan dies at age 80

    Saturday, August 18 2018 6:00 AM EDT2018-08-18 10:00:29 GMT
    Saturday, August 18 2018 6:48 AM EDT2018-08-18 10:48:38 GMT
    Former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan has died at the age of 80. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)Former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan has died at the age of 80. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

    Kofi Annan, one of the world's most celebrated diplomats and a charismatic symbol of the United Nations who rose through its ranks to become the first black African secretary-general, has died.

    More >>

    Kofi Annan, one of the world's most celebrated diplomats and a charismatic symbol of the United Nations who rose through its ranks to become the first black African secretary-general, has died.

    More >>
  • Officials investigate cause of death for Colorado mom, kids

    Officials investigate cause of death for Colorado mom, kids

    Friday, August 17 2018 2:14 AM EDT2018-08-17 06:14:36 GMT
    Saturday, August 18 2018 6:47 AM EDT2018-08-18 10:47:30 GMT
    (The Colorado Bureau of Investigation via AP). This photo combo of images provided by The Colorado Bureau of Investigation shows, from left, Bella Watts, Celeste Watts and Shanann Watts.  The Frederick Police Department said Chris Watts was taken into ...(The Colorado Bureau of Investigation via AP). This photo combo of images provided by The Colorado Bureau of Investigation shows, from left, Bella Watts, Celeste Watts and Shanann Watts. The Frederick Police Department said Chris Watts was taken into ...

    Shanann Watts' Facebook page painted a portrait of a happy married life - of a woman dedicated to her husband and their two young children.

    More >>

    Shanann Watts' Facebook page painted a portrait of a happy married life - of a woman dedicated to her husband and their two young children.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly