The winner of Gov. Romney’s essay contest was announced this weekend! Fifteen year old Jake Walter lives in Peosta, Iowa and couldn’t believe he won.
According to his local paper:
“When the guy called to tell me I won, I asked him if it was a prank,” said Jake Walters, of Peosta, Iowa. “It just ultimately definitely took me by surprise.”
The Dyersville Beckman High School sophomore won an all-expense-paid trip for two people to the Boston Red Sox game versus the Oakland A’s at Fenway Park on July 8. He brought his father, Jeff, as his guest.
“It was really fun,” Walters said. “It was a great game.”
Here is the winning submission:
Jake Walter’s Winning Essay
What does a free and strong America mean to me? It means I have the right to follow my dreams, to strive for success, to be innovative, to do as I, the individual sees fit. A free America is a place where you are free to think as you please. A country that thrives, not because of the government, but because of the people. A place where everyone can aspire to succeed, any goal can be accomplished; all you must do is try. It’s a place where no one is treated different because of religion, race or gender. The promise of freedom is what called our ancestors to endure many hardships and make a new life together. They all came together, and by embracing their differences, they grew stronger. That’s what a free America means to me; a place where we all have an equal chance of success. What does a strong America mean to me? It’s a place that is unified, that stands ready to defend its freedom, and to help those without it get it. An America that doesn’t tolerate oppression. A nation that has self discipline, responsibility and appreciation for those who died to defend it. Strength that we use to defend our belief in individual freedom. To me, a free and strong America is a land of opportunity where you can chase your dreams, and where we have a chance to make them come true.