‘Why I’m Optimistic About Our Nation’s Future’

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot
Nowell accepted her award with representatives of her sponsoring organization in attendance, Pat Myers of the Greencastle VFW Post 6319 Auxiliary and Dale Beaver, post commander.

Molly Nowell, a senior at Greencastle-Antrim High School, won fourth place in the District 21 Veterans of Foreign Wars Voice of Democracy Scholarship Program. She presented her speech on the subject, “Why I’m Optimistic About Our Nation’s Future”, at the annual banquet held in East Berlin.

Nowell accepted her award with representatives of her sponsoring organization in attendance, Pat Myers of the Greencastle VFW Post 6319 Auxiliary and Dale Beaver, post commander.

District 21 includes Franklin, Adams and York counties.

By Molly R. Nowell

Greencastle-Antrim High School

Class of 2014

Voice of Democracy Program

Courage and determination. These two words are the backbone of America. Harry Truman once said, “America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination and an unbeatable determination to do the job at hand.” America is a nation that has survived the Revolutionary War, Civil War, two World Wars and the Korean and Vietnam wars. Our nation has prevailed through these conflicts because of the fortitude and persistence of our armed services. They sacrifice passing turkey around the table with their families on Thanksgiving, seeing their children’s smiling faces as they open Christmas gifts and sometimes give their lives to help protect the lives of others. They serve to preserve and maintain this nation’s strength. They serve to protect our freedoms so we may always live without fear. They serve because they take pride in America. Whenever duty calls, they willingly step up and perform whatever tasks may be necessary. Our Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and Coast Guard have served our nation with pride and honor and preserved our freedoms. I am confident that future generations of men and women who make the decision to serve in the armed forces will boldly accept these duties and continue America’s legacy.

A little boy eagerly waits for the return of his father from a two-year deployment. He can’t sit still; he just wants to feel his daddy’s strong arms around him again. Then he sees the crowd of soldiers walking to meet their loved ones. With squinting eyes he searches the crowd for his father. Suddenly he feels a hand on his shoulder. He turns around and leaps into his daddy’s arms. The boy whispers in his father’s ear, “Daddy, I love you so much. I know you have a tough job and I worry about you a lot, but I know how important it is to protect this country and our freedoms. When I grow up, I wanna be the brave soldier that you are.” After a minute the father whispers back, tears streaming down his face, “Son, you make me proud and I know you’ll be a fine soldier.” America’s future is bright because future generations are willing to serve. Fifteen years later, on the anniversary of his father’s second and final deployment, that same eager little boy stands tall as his father smiles down on him from above. “I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States...So help me God.”

Courage and determination. These two words are reason for optimism because I believe that they are sewn into our American culture and identity. Americans are a persistent, enduring people who will not stop until they see their ideas and dreams come to pass. This great land is the beacon of hope and the land of opportunity; whether it be a young man trying to build a thriving company or a child who practices every day, determined to make the basketball team. No matter what one is striving to accomplish, they never give up. This too is reason for optimism, because a nation of adamant citizens will surely prosper.

On Veteran’s Day we honor and commemorate those who have faithfully served our country and we show appreciation for their sacrifices. This is a day for all Americans to reflect on our freedoms and the progress of America. We must remember the courage and determination of the soldiers in the trenches during World War I and II, in the jungles of Vietnam and the scorching, hot sands of Iraq.

Americans have a distinguished pride for their country, a nation of freedom. This is cause for our unyielding determination to see our nation succeed and prevail through all circumstances. Courage and determination. It’s in American blood and that is why I am optimistic.