Bucs WR Vincent Jackson wins NFL military award
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Vincent Jackson's commitment to supporting the military has earned him the NFL's Salute To Service Award.
The Tampa Bay wide receiver will be presented the honor Saturday night at NFL Honors by USAA, the league's military appreciation sponsor. The award was created to acknowledge exceptional efforts by members of the NFL to honor and support the military community.
''It's great to see the NFL use their powerful platform to honor the members of our nation's military,'' Jackson told The Associated Press in an email Friday.
''I'm proud to be from a military family, and I'm also proud to be part of an organization such as the NFL that recognizes the sacrifice and dedication that our nation's soldiers, and their families, devote to this country.''
Jackson will have $25,000 donated in his honor 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.''
In 2012, on Veterans' Day, Jackson launched the Jackson In Action 83 Foundation to support military families. The foundation focuses on the educational, emotional and physical health of military children.
Two years later, Jackson wrote a children's book, ''Danny Dogtags: Dealing with Deployment,'' examining the challenges he faced in a military family.
A three-time Pro Bowl receiver, Jackson's parents served a combined 25 years of active-duty service in the Army.
Last year, Jackson hosted a military moms baby shower for 40 expecting or recently delivered mothers. Jackson and his wife, Lindsey, surprised each woman with more than $1,000 in merchandise to help them care for the infant.
Jackson also runs the ''Jackson in Action'' front row fans section at Buccaneers games.
Previous winners of the USAA award were Titans owner Bud Adams, a World War II veteran, in 2011; Bears cornerback Charles Tillman in 2012; Ravens coach John Harbaugh in 2013; and Bears DE Jared Allen in 2014. Allen is now with the Panthers and will play in Sunday's Super Bowl against Denver.
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