WHITE SWAN, WA, US
U. S. Marine Corps
LCPL, 1ST BN 5TH MAR (RCT-8,II MEF FWD) 1ST MAR DIV, CAMP PENDLETON, CA
04/24/2011, BASTION, AFGHANISTAN
Thank you for your service to your country and thank you for giving your life for my freedom. May your soul fly with the eagles. Beth J. M.
Jackson was a Gila River Native American. He shares the same blood line as WWII Iwo Jima flag raiser, CPL Ira Hayes. He enlisted in the Marine Corps less than two years ago and deployed to Afghanistan in March.
Joe Michael Jackson was engaged in many activities throughout his life. He enjoyed camping, fishing, and other outdoor activities. In childhood, he enjoyed Native American activities such as powwows and sporting activities. Joe graduated White Swan High School in 2009. Joe also played the flute and guitar and was a collector of swords, and shared listening to music with his friends and family. He specifically enjoyed creating Native American style artwork and bead work and was considered a natural-born artist.
Joe was actively involved in S.A.D.D., or Students Against Drinking and Drugs, and was responsible for the artwork in a national S.A.D.D. advertising campaign. Joe was known for always keeping a smile on his face throughout adversity. He was a determined young man and a giving person. For example, his Senior Exit Project consisted of assisting with the remodelling of his grandmother’s home.
“He was my road dog. That was my best friend. Besides my little girl, that was my best friend. I lost my best friend”, says Shawn Marceau, Jackson’s father.
The Marine Corps reports that LCPL Jackson’s actions at the time of his death likely saved the lives of other Marines. His father said that does not surprise him because Joe was always looking out for others.
LCPL Jackson comes from a long line of servicemen. His father and grandfather were Marines and his great grandfather parachuted into Normandy during World War II. LCPL Jackson is now a decorated war hero; he has been awarded five medals including the Purple Heart.