Talent Contest Winner Featured in WVa’s Adult Literacy Campaign | West Virginia News

CHARLESTON, West Virginia (AP) — Landau Eugene Murphy Jr., winner of “America’s Got Talent,” helps with an adult literacy campaign in West Virginia.

Murphy’s photo is on billboards statewide as part of the state Department of Education’s Bureau of Adult Education’s “Never Too Late to Graduate” campaign.

Murphy also displays the materials and banners at his state concerts to provide information to help people earn their degrees and pursue other educational opportunities, the department said.

“I truly believe it’s never too late to graduate, and I hope others will use my story as an example of how to always have a goal and a dream,” Murphy said.

The Logan, West Virginia native dropped out of school in the 11th grade, a decision that haunted him for years. He worked many odd jobs and at one point lived off his car.

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Last year during the coronavirus pandemic, the singer took online classes in the spring and summer after his on-road performances were wiped out by the virus shutdown. He earned his high school equivalency diploma 30 years after dropping out.

In 2011, Murphy’s smooth renditions of Frank Sinatra hits landed him $1 million, his own show in Las Vegas and a recording contract when he won the NBC talent show.

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