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Bucs WR Jackson wins NFL’s Salute To Service Award

Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Vincent Jackson thought he was just going to be hanging out with Hall of Fame quarterback Roger Staubach for a few minutes at the Super Bowl on Friday morning. Staubach, though, had a surprise for Jackson.

A day ahead of the official presentation at the NFL Honors ceremony, Staubach named Jackson the winner of the NFL’s 2015 Salute to Service Award for Jackson’s work supporting military families.

A clearly stunned Jackson said he was humbled by the honor, which was created to acknowledge efforts made by members of the NFL community to honor and support U.S. service members, veterans and their families.

“This is awesome,’’ Jackson said during the presentation that was carried live on the NFL Network. “It’s a (testament) to what our service men and women mean to our country.’’

A self-proclaimed “military brat,’’ Jackson began the Jackson in Action 83 Foundation for military families on Veterans Day 2012 in an effort to aid, educate and support the children of military families.

He later wrote a children’s book, “Danny Dogtags, Dealing with Deployment,” for military children facing the challenges of life while a parent is serving away from home and last year hosted a military mom’s baby shower for expecting or recently delivered mothers.

“USAA (the award’s sponsor) is a big a supporter of what we do down in Tampa and in that region, but more so are all the people in my camp,’’ Jackson said. “Obvioulsy I don’t do it by myself.

“I’ve got a great executive director in Allison Gorrell down in Tampa. My family is involved and so are all volunteers. They spend countless hours being selfless because they have the same passion I do for our military families.’’

Jackson, a three-time Pro Bowler whose parents combined for 25 years of active-duty service in the Army, will have $25,000 donated in his name from USAA to the official aid societies representing all five military branches.

“Vincent Jackson has been a longtime leader in the NFL community for his efforts to honor our nation’s military and is a well-deserving recipient of this year’s Salute to Service Award presented by USAA,” said Vice Admiral (Ret.) John Bird, USAA’s senior vice president of military affairs.

“Coming from a military family himself, Vincent has not only made an incredible personal commitment to support military families through his foundation’s contributions, but has also inspired so many others to join his worthy cause.”

Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams, a World War II veteran (2011); Bears cornerback Charles Tillman (2012); Ravens coach John Harbaugh (2013) and Bears DE Jared Allen (2014) are the previous winners of the award.

 



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