Tuttle’s Iron Man: 14 years of public school education without an absence

TUTTLE, OKLAHOMA -- Homework is finished.

So are classes for seniors at Tuttle High.

Anthony Roberts and his mom Michelle are just going over some old stuff now, 14 years of public school stuff.

"I would say I'm very fortunate," says the graduate.

Michelle kept whole stacks of it to make scrapbooks..

Among the many achievements in them, some good art work, good grades, cool Valentines, and a whole series of certificates, 14 of them, that signify perfect attendance in school.

No missed days, no absences at all.

"To me," he says. "Perfect attendance is just an everyday thing."

Of course it helped that Anthony was a healthy kid to begin with.

Those first few grades no one really noticed the streak building.

Pre-k, Kindergarten, a year called Transition to 1st Grade with Mrs. Watford, 1st Grade and so on.

As the consecutive days piled up it got even harder to miss.

"I got to thinking it was kind of cool," he says.

Anthony survived a couple of broken arms and a concussion.

He always seemed to get sick on vacation.

Mom says, "I think it was pure exhaustion."

But there was one day his senior year.

He worked late.

He was tired.

His back hurt.

The streak almost ended.

"I was in a cranky mood, cranky day," says Anthony.

"How close did you come?" asks his visitor.

"I was in the process of turning over," he laughs.

Fortunately, Mom had a remedy she'd used before.

"I think there was some ice water thrown a couple of times," she smiles.

"You're not sick. You're going to school," she states.

The school year ends early for seniors.

They're excused those last few days of class to get ready for graduation.

Michelle no longer has to keep the ice water handy.

"I have me time!" she exclaims.

Anthony will graduate high school with a good grade point average, an eagle scout certificate, and one Governor's Commendation for 14 years of perfect attendance.

It's truly a singular mile stone for which they are both proud.

Anthony says, "It's unique to me. I love it."

Tuttle High School graduation is scheduled for May 19 at Tiger Stadium.