My father wiped the sweat from his brow, turned toward me and said, Son, one day youll make a fine farmer. As the unrelenting sun slanted down on the two of us I gazed into the distance and pondered, then firmly stated, Dad, I want to be a doctor. My father looked down at me surprised evident in his weathered face and smiled. I was encouraged, relieved and more determined then ever to realize my dreams.
My desire to become a doctor was rooted in my yearning to help mankind in general. Only days after my eighteenth birthday, with these idealistic notions in mind, I enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. When the twin towers collapsed my heart collapsed for those killed, their families and loved ones. My entire being was imbued with purpose and I set forth on my path with newfound resolve. It is in this manner that I found myself en route to a hospital in Iraq to capture a terrorist who being harbored there. I gathered my squad and briefed them on the mission; they stoically accepted their orders raced to the Hospital.
Earlier that day the terrorist attacked our outpost, firing with furious determination and blessed inaccuracy. We returned fire injuring him, despite this he desperately ran away and disappeared into an alley. Frustrated, we returned to post. Now as we sped to the Hospital, my blood raced. I didnt know what to expect, already I had seen too much. This war torn county is a shock to ones sensibilities. When you walk down the street, hordes of emaciated children follow you in hope will spare them food. As soon as you do so, you find yourself in a virtual quagmire of flesh, unable to move. Evidence of war was everywhere; the streets were paved with litter, dilapidated vehicles and bodies both animal and occasionally human. Despite living this grisly reality nothing could prepare me for what I saw in that Hospital.
Pools of blood coagulated on the floor both outside and inside the building, attracting insects of all kinds. Sanitary measures were not taken whatsoever. Inside I saw men, women and children fighting for their lives. In cross fires of war no one is safe, the innocent are punished as much as the guilty. After our search was complete, I stood at the doors of the hospital and watch as those who lost their fight for life were carted across the street to the crematorium. I felt powerless to help them. The doctors in Iraq and other countries are impossibly overwhelmed by victims plagued by war, hunger and disease. I felt then and feel now an overpowering need to help them. I wish to return to Iraq, another third world country or even here in the United States and provide medical care to an impoverished community. Since I was a child I desired to improve the world around me with medical expertise. Now as a man tempered by time and hardship my goals have not wavered but have solidified. I will be a doctor and to this end I wish to receive the best education possible, so youll find me here before the gates of Harvard awaiting your admittance.
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