LEXINGTON, NC – Joseph Ferguson added one more major achievement to his long list of accomplishments, days before his death with the help of the Hospice of Davidson County.

On Friday, the organization presented Ferguson with his honorary Masters of Health Care Administration degree from Pfeiffer University. He was on track to graduate, but because of his health he unable to finish.

Ferguson said before his death, “Receiving my diploma in Masters of Health Care Administration brings me great pride. I thank and appreciate God for the blessings that I have.”

He also said, “I take every day, one day at a time and try to be the best that I can be.”

In 2014, Ferguson earned his bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from ITT Technical Institute. He was the valedictorian of his class.

Ferguson served not only his community but his country with 18 years in the Navy. He received a Good Conduct Medal. He also served nine years as a supervisor at Davidson County 911 Communications Center and the last five years as a security guard at Cone Health.

Ferguson passed away peacefully in his home Monday morning in Lexington. He is survived by his four kids and five grandchildren.