Personal Narrative Essay: The Arlington National Cemetery

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The sun’s rays lapped at my pale face and slithered around my limbs, until my skin became scorched, a vibrant, July red. The heat became trapped underneath my standard issue, national blue corduroy jacket and jet black nylon pantyhose. The heat bounced off the marble tombstones, but forward we marched like soldiers down the pathway arm in arm. As sweat trickled down my neck and back like the steady drip of a leaking faucet, I noticed even the birds were hushed and the grass still, as if in the memory of those who have been forgotten. Rows of headstones stood upright surrounding Arlington National Cemetery in a hushed tranquility. I heard stories about the place where more than 400,000 soldiers from the United States are buried, yet I had never …show more content…

A young man in uniform, with a poppy pinned to his chest, standing in the midst of the battlefield. Tears begin to rush down my cheeks, even though my great grandfather returned to his family, friends, and future wife after the war, unlike the thousands of soldiers surrounding me.
My family has passed down my great grandfather’s uniform, generation by generation, reminding us to serve others, unconditionally. As I walked through the Arlington Cemetery with fellow leaders of the National FFA Organization wearing our blue corduroy jackets, I realized we too are an army. We each have our own stories just like the soldiers, and come together as a whole to represent something bigger than ourselves and to serve.
The FFA motto is “Learning to do, doing to learn, earning to live, and living to serve” and FFA members passionately embody “living to serve.” We serve our communities, states and nation relentlessly. The organization has allowed me to filter my passion for creativity and technology to bring new passions for young leaders to pursue. FFA has inspired me to dedicate myself to make an impact for future generations to come, just like every single one of the soldiers buried at Arlington Cemetery has done. My great grandfather inspired me with his uniform, and today when I put on my own uniform I am serving 649,355 FFA nationwide members as well as my

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