Finding Freedom in America

Lance Kim, Honorable Mention
Grade 1

My mom, Kim Touneh, was the first in my family to come to America. She was born in Vietnam. My mom escaped from the Vietnam War in 1975 when she was a little girl. She remembers all the loud noises and fear in her parents’ eyes. When her family climbed into the crowded ship, her mom dropped the milk for her baby sister. A brave soldier climbed down the ladder to get the milk. At the same time, my mom slipped down the ladder. Luckily, another brave soldier caught her in time. He helped her climb into the ship. She remembered feeling scared in the dark and crowded ship. They were on the ship for days. When her family got to the refugee camp, they had to stay there for months without a home.

Finally, her family came to America. They had no money and just the clothes on them. Her family was sad, afraid, and did not know how to speak English. My mom felt scared going to a different country with different customs. With very little, she worked hard to finish college. She became a biologist and taught about sea creatures in colleges.

My mom tells me to do well in school and be a good person. I am very lucky to have been born in America. In America, we have the freedom to live and learn. I love my mom, especially when she buys me donuts.