FORT SILL, Okla. (Dec. 13, 2013) -- Little boys often want to grow up to be just like their dads.

Six-year-old, Keenan Howard won the 2013 National Parent Teacher Association Reflections Art Competition in the primary literature category for first graders from Sullivan Village Elementary School in Lawton.

This year's theme, "Believe, Dream, Inspire," was a motivating force for the subject of Keenan's essay.

"I want to be a Soldier, just like my daddy," he said.

Keenan's father, Eric Howard, served two tours in Korea and one in Afghanistan. Even though Eric was medically retired from the Army in June, due to severe post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and has undergone multiple surgeries in the past year, Keenan continues his quest to follow in his father's footsteps.

"I'm proud of my daddy. I want to go in the Army and be just like him. He's going to teach me how to shoot the BB gun that Santa brings me this year for Christmas," said Keenan.

Eric's hopes for Keenan's future mirrors that which many parents adhere to.

"I want my son to be better than me ... to be more than I ever was or could be," he said.

Keenan is well on his way to success at a young age. He turns 7 this week, and his essay was selected to represent the entire Lawton Public School system in the first grade category for the Reflections competition.

Sylvia Moore, Sullivan Village Elementary School principal said the awards ceremony for that event will happen after the holiday break.

The next step for Keenan is to compete at the district level. Those winners will be announced by February.