One Warner Robins man is living proof that it's never too late to finish a goal.
Master Sergeant Christopher Faust waited nearly three decades to graduate college, and then because of a deployment overseas, missed his own graduation.
But his church helped him have his long-awaited ceremony on Sunday.
Sunday's walk through his church's sanctuary was literally the graduation walk of a lifetime for the Macon State College Student.
That's because the endeavor to his college degree started in 1983, and his ceremonial walk almost didn't happen.
The 45-year-old officer at Robins Air Force Base finished his final classes in December before being deployed in February. He planned to be back just days before his May 7th graduation.
But the flight, he says, was delayed for about a week, and he missed the ceremony.
"I understand it," Faust says, "but then again there were certain things where you just wanted to be there."
That's why he received his diploma in a surprise ceremony after Sunday's church service.
Pastor Andy Cook says the church felt Faust deserved the recognition.
"We were kind of just going, 'Oh that's too bad. That's too bad,' says Cook. "And then we just woke up one day and said, 'Why does he have to miss it?'"
For Faust, February's deployment to Southeast Asia wasn't the first time duty had come before his goals.
Faust says over the course of 27 years his plans changed. He got married, had kids, and through the Air Force, was re-stationed several times and deployed.
"It's that kind of stuff that happens in life," says Faust. "If you don't stick to your original plan, and start deviating from it, it makes things more difficult."
But not impossible, he says.
Faust worked during the day and went to school at night. He says one thing that kept him from giving up was his grandmother.
"Even before I was out of high school, my grandmother said one thing she wanted her two grandsons to do was have a college degree," Faust says.
Faust says he's glad he fulfilled that dream and hopes it inspires others to follow theirs too.
"I hear about 88-year-old folks getting their degree," Faust says. "And I think it's just awesome. It's just something that says, 'I've achieved that milestone.'"
Faust's degree is in Information Technology. He graduated Summa Cum Laude and a presidential scholar with a 3.9 grade point average.