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'One boy USO' gets brick in Walk of Memories

Legion honors 10-year-old

J.R. Wages, left, from American Legion Post 201 helps 10-year-old Cody Jackson place his brick in the Walk of Memories. Jessa Pease. (click for larger version)

From left to right: Kenneth Williams, Stephen Olesnevich, Cody Jackson, J.R. Wages and Gerald Lynch all gather to watch Jackson’s brick be added to the Walk of Memories at American Legion Post 201. Jessa Pease. (click for larger version)
June 11, 2013
ALPHARETTA, Ga. — One 10-year-old boy's efforts to show his dedication and support for the United States Military earned him a brick June 4 in the Walk of Veterans at American Legion Post 201.

Cody Jackson, who is homeschooled by his mother Kelly, sends care packages to injured soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan and greets troops at the Hartsfield Jackson Airport in Atlanta three times a month.

"As the troops are coming up the elevator, he greets them. That's where you get the 'One Boy USO,'" said Stephen Olesnevich of Post 201. "This boy is dynamic. He is going to go places."

Jackson has shaken hands with about 15,000 veterans and active military personnel and about 4,000 were at the Charlotte Motor Speedway when he greeted troops getting off the buses.

"He's been given medals. They just grab them off of their uniforms and give them too him," Olesnevich said. "If you show him a picture of a plane or a weapon, he knows a lot about it. He has even done his own coloring book. You might learn something from him."

In honor of Jackson's service to the troops, American Legion Post 201 dedicated a brick to Jackson to be placed with the other 8,000 bricks inscribed with the names of Georgians who served in the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and Coast Guard.

"We wanted to show respect to Cody, so he could put the brick in the ground," Olesnevich said. "He wanted it that way. He wrote the brick up himself."

Jackson has two grandfathers who fought in wars along with a great uncle and a cousin. Because of this, Jackson is a member of the Sons of American Legion and he said he wants to be a Marine someday.

"I want to be a Marine," Jackson said, "because a lot of my family members were Marines and it is the hardest one."

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