The Central Park 5 were robbed of a lot of valuable life experiences while they sat in prison for a crime they didn’t commit. [And the current president of the United States may have had a lot to do with that.] Now that they’ve been released and settled with the city of New York, they’re playing catch up. 

Yusef Salaam, Kevin Richardson and Raymond Santana Jr., three members of the group of falsely accused men had the pleasure of receiving honorary high school diplomas and making up a graduation they all missed in their youth. Fortunately, they had each earned GEDs and associate degrees while they were incarcerated, but the ceremonial aspect was always missing.

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“Even though we were not able to go back and right the wrong of not getting our high school diplomas outside, here we are being honored in such a way in front of our family and friends,” Salaam said, according to the Grio. “This is a blessing.”

“It’s kind of emotional,” Santana said, adding, “When we went to prison, this was taken away from us. It was something we never got to experience. You felt like you were being robbed, and we’ve finally found redemption.”