Winter 2014: “Support for Veterans” Literary Gems

We received many powerful essays for the Winter 2014 Writing Competition. Though not every participant can win the contest, we'd like to share some excerpts that caught our eye.

“I was requested to imagine what it’s like to serve in a war, but I simply can’t. Sure I can picture armed conflict, violent entanglements, and the patterned click of guns, but it seems impossible for me to visualize and feel the bitterness of war that remains as such an overbearing as well as an inescapable sensation for you”

-Taylor Vest, grade 12, Tunstall High School, Danville, VA


“Words alone seem so ineffective and impersonal.”

-Dwayne Fraser, Nova Scotia Community College, New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, Canada


“Although I knew you as a humble, modest, and very polite man who loved to paint on weekends, I noticed the unanswered questions you carried around.”

-Annette Hope, University of Education, Mannheim, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany


“I believe everyone should live a long and healthy life; not a dreadful one living day by day wondering why you sacrificed so much for people that seem to care so little.”

-Robin Perkins, Radford University, Stafford, VA


“War isn’t over until the soldiers can recover from the trauma in their heads.”

-Danielle Gangloff, Radford University, Radford, VA


“I agree with war because I think it solves problems. However, I then ask myself if it really does solve problems. It stopped Hitler in World War II, but yet we sacrifice millions of people’s lives on both sides. I disagree with war in the sense that I feel like we should all live on Earth together in harmony, but again I ask myself if this is even possible.”

-Skylar Zambito, Grade 7, Heritage Digital Academy, Escondido, CA


“We eagerly keep watch, celebrations frozen, suspended in the abyss of time until your arrival. So hurry home, Mr. Hammilton; your country awaits you.”

-Sydney Kornelsen, Grade 8, Heritage Digital Academy, Fallbrook, CA


“You have seen what others see only in nightmares, but you can’t wake up from it. You live it.”

-Claire Leverence, Grade 7, Star of Bethlehem Lutheran School, New Berlin, WI


“It’s easy for someone like me, who hasn’t fought in a war, to say ‘you can just forget.’ Even though it’s nearly impossible for me to help you forget, I can show you what waits at home. Family.”

-Emily Lohr, Grade 7, Star of Bethlehem Lutheran School, New Berlin, WI


“As  child, I never handled change well. As a teen, it’s even worse. Panic flutters in my throat if my CD player gives so much as a wheeze when I fall asleep at night. Vacations test every ounce of my patience and courage. And don’t even get me started on moving. But my problems are nothing compared to that of a returning soldier.”

-Faith Goede, Grade 8, Star of Bethlehem Lutheran School, New Berlin, WI

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