Lake Orion High School presented two high school diplomas to Michigan World War II Veterans at the school’s graduation ceremony on June 6 at Meadowbrook.
Receiving diplomas were Charles Davis, father of Lake Orion High School teacher Denny Davis; and Orsel Dudley or Indiana. The diplomas were awarded through an application used to establish the eligibility of an honorably discharged WWII veteran for a high school diploma from the State of Michigan.
Veterans receiving the diploma must have attended high school in Michigan and must have served in the military between Dec. 16, 1940 and Dec. 31, 1946. Public Act 181 of 2001 authorized the board of a Michigan school district to award the diploma.
Dudley attended the graduation ceremony on June 6, but Davis was unable to attend.
Charles E. Davis
Charles Davis attended Lake Orion High School from 1942 through 1943. He played a year of baseball there, and entered WWII active duty military service in Sept. of 1943.
Davis received an honorable discharge from the United States Navy in April of 1945. He received four ribbons for his term of duty. Davis has been remarried for 20 years to Leah. He has two sons and two adopted sons, six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Davis lives in Kalkaska and loves to hunt and fish.
Orsel T. Dudley
Orsel Dudley attended Lake Orion High School from 1942-44. While there, he was a member of the basketball team. In 1944, Dudley volunteered for military service in the Army on July 10, 1944.
He was involved in several battles and campaigns including: Ardennes; Rhineland; Central Europe (infantry as part of the Battle of the Bulge). In March of 1945 Dudley was wounded in action, and received several decorations and citations: The American Theatre Ribbon, European Theatre Ribbon, Ribbon with three Bronze Stars, Good Conduct Medal, Purple Heart Medal and WWII Victory Medal.
Dudley received an honorable discharge from the Army on April 30, 1946. He married Betty Gumfory in November 1946, and moved to Indianapolis in 1948. The couple raised two sons, Danny and Gary, and Dudley was widowed in 1968. He has three grandchildren, Kyle, Andy and Kelly.
Dudley still lives in Indianapolis, and his hobbies include woodworking, landscaping and following sports.