The Basic School Instructor Battalion 236th Marine Corps Birthday Ball has apparently left a lasting impression on Justin Timberlake. The "Friends with Benefits" star attended the military event by invitation from Corporal Kelsey DeSantis, and called it "one of the most moving evenings I've ever had."
After the ball, the 30-year-old singer-turned-actor took to his personal blog to share the experience. "I knew I would have an evening that I wouldn't forget... Something I could tell my friends about. What I didn't know was how moved I would be by the whole experience," so he wrote in a lengthy post.
JT then revealed that he was "almost brought to tears" by "a video about Pearl Harbor/WW2 and the September 11 terrorist attacks" in which some Marines told their stories. "There was a common theme that I began to notice as well," he wrote. "No matter what the situation. No matter how dire... They were there FIRST. There on the front lines. No questions... Just reaction."
"It was a surreal moment to be in that room with so many of our great Marines who have such a different type of connection to those stories," the former NSYNC member continued. "One that we who don't serve will NEVER understand. It was familial. It was like they were listening to their own blood brothers."
In the post, JT also praised his date of the evening, Corporal DeSantis. "She seemed to me to be so humble and honest," he shared. "She also simultaneously seemed like she was nervous about the whole evening and if I was going to enjoy myself. ... I have to tell you, it's not every day that I meet a 23 year old girl and she's more worried about if I'm having fun or if I'm comfortable!"
The "In Time" actor then noted, "It hit me all of a sudden that these were the type of people that look after us and our freedom... Humble, concerned for others before themselves... This was the type of person our Marine Corps was building." He went to admit, "I was really blown away."
Near the end of his post, JT wrote, "To all of you that serve every day for us... Ensuring our freedom, I say: My deepest gratitude to you. I've met so many of my heroes... From Michael Jordan to Michael Jackson. And, nothing makes me feel more honor and pride than when I get to meet one of you. Last night changed my life and I will never forget it."