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Consider this quote from Abe Lincoln

"America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves."



In case you suddenly look around and notice that there are few FFA members around it is safe to say most of them have taken flight and headed to Louisville, Kentucky for the National Convention. I also will be loading up the car and making the trip east this week to sit in on the National FFA Alumni meetings taking place there as well.

As an old school FFA member going to Kentucky for Convention is a new and different experience for me. Never knowing any place but Kansas City as the location for the largest gathering of blue jackets in one place seems odd to me. It has been nearly 30 years since I attended my very first Convention and remember well how amazed I was by everything I saw. It wasn't just having the opportunity to hear the motivational speakers, or to spend time at the American Royal, but understanding that each one of us in the auditorium was truly a part of something much larger than we had been able to comprehend.

There would be more trips to Convention in the years to come. The memories of those trips equally as important. Finding old friends andmeeting new ones, trying to keep our Ag teacher from sneaking onto the Sawyer Brown tour bus, visiting with young people from across the U.S. and beyond and that sunny Saturday morning as we watched our fellow Iowan, Kevin Eblen become the National FFA President.

I wonder if my trip this year will be like those previous? Will the "wow" factor still be there? Will I run into friends from long ago? Maybe...but one thing is for certain, I probably won't sleep much the night before.

Finally this week, I want to give a huge happy birthday to the Earlham FFA chapter. They were chartered October 25, 1935 and are celebrating 80 years. Here's to another successful 80 ahead of you! See you next week...remember we're all in this together.