The Ben Jackson Foundation recently awarded a Travel Award to Jackson O’Connell, a 2018 graduate of Wisconsin Heights High School.
After graduation, O’Connell enlisted in the Marine Corps. He left for San Diego, CA to go to basic training on October 15, 2018. Upon graduation, prior to going to infantry training, he was able to travel home for leave in January of 2019. He is currently stationed at Camp Pendleton north of San Diego. This travel award will help to bring Jackson home for the Christmas holiday this year, which will be his first holiday home in two years.
Jackson chose to enlist in the Marine Corps because it is the hardest branch and most rewarding. “I chose to enlist for my friends and family and to better myself and become a more humble and proper human being,” Jackson said. His mother Suzanne says that it is impressive to see how much he has learned and grown. Some of the things that Suzanne misses most about her son are his jokes and seeing him smile. The daily connection with him and his intuition are also missed.
Suzanne learned about the Ben Jackson Foundation from the guidance counselor at Wisconsin Heights High School and helped Jackson apply via the foundation website. She accepted the Travel Award for Jackson at a recent Trivia night sponsored by the Foundation. After the event, she mentioned that she was impressed with the sense of community and feeling of connection with other military families that were present and was excited to befriend other military mothers and families. She is grateful and looks forward to being able to work with the Foundation in the future.