WWII veteran Jackson honored on Veterans Day
World War II Army veteran O.D. Jackson was recognized at the Veterans Day ceremony here on Friday for his combat service and for 78 years of continuous service with the American Legion Post 138.
Veterans Day was observed Friday in the Fallen Veterans Plaza at DeWitt DeWeese Park.
“He’s a World War II veteran so I assume he joined [American Legion Post 138] right after he got back to Philadelphia,” said Willie Jackson, his son. “He has always been about the veterans organizations, not just the American Legion but also the VFW. He is also a member of the Military Order of the Purple Heart.
“He volunteered for the service while he was still in high school. He served in the Pacific and was part of 1st Calvary Division as they were island hoping in the Pacific.”
Mr. O.D. received a special plaque on Friday. He was recognition and talked about why Veterans Day is important to him.
“Veterans Day means everything to me,”Jackson said. “It means we live in a free country because of the people who served to defend us. Not everyone living in thus world enjoys the freedoms we do.”
Lt. Col. Chris Clark of the Mississippi National Guard was the special speaker for the day.
Prior to Jackson’s recognition, Ray Crocker announced that all work on the new Fallen Veterans Monument is complete and that the monument will be officially turned over to the city.
“The first meeting we had, I didn’t know if we would ever get it done,” said Crocker, who headed the committee to replace the monument after the original one was destroyed by a tornado.
“Veterans Day celebrates a group of people who have served to keep this country free,” he said.
Crocker thanked the many citizens and elected officials who worked to make the monument replacement happen, especially state Sen. Jenifer Branning and Rep. Scott Bounds who worked to get $50,000 from the Legislature. He also thanked the county.
Jackson was one of eight Neshoba County brothers who served. Five of the brothers even served in WWII at the same time.