Jade Jones, a former student of Preston Middle School and Fossil Ridge High s a proud recipient of scholarship from the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation. A military kid all her life (but don’t call her an Army brat!), she remembers running around the barracks and collecting a number of “uncles” along the way. Having grown up with the Marine Corps she has experienced the pride, the heroism and yes, the tragedy that is part of being a Marine. In 2004, her father, Staff Sergeant John Jones, USMC (Ret.), was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps after he was severely injured in Iraq when his humvee ran over a double-stacked anti-tank mine. This incident eventually led to the amputation of both of his legs below the knee.
Jade was about seven years old when her father came home for good. At first, it appeared that they could save one leg but in the months that followed the first amputation, it became clear that the other would never heal properly and had to be amputated also. SSgt Jones had a difficult time adjusting and didn’t want to be seen in the hospital. It was also difficult for the pre-adolescent Jade, who just wanted her dad back. Even now, fireworks displays are a source of PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and the family does not attend them.
But Jade couldn’t allow herself to give up, nor was she going to be given the chance to do so. She found herself eligible for a scholarship from the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation.
Eligibility requires a GPA of 2.0 or more and a demonstration of financial need. Her father’s honorable discharge was what made the scholarship available to her. With the scholarship funds, she was able to obtain an associate’s degree from the Culinary Institute of America At Greystone In Napa California, specializing in baking and pastry arts. Her current plans are to attend The Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park to earn a bachelor’s in business management and hospitality.
The Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation honors Marines by educating their children with the help of donations. One of the fundraisers is called the Patriots at Pebble Beach Golf Tournament in Pebble Beach California. Both Jade and her father were able to attend and the story of Jade and her father aired as part of a TV special on the Golf Channel. Jade and her father can be seen making their presentation at https://www.coloradoan.com/story/news/2018/07/02/fort-collins-recipient-marine-corps-scholarship-gets-golf-channel-segment/729120002/. Her father explains that he is not one to want the spotlight on himself, stating that “What I’m really proud of, is her”. He is also proud of the Marine Corps for giving him the opportunity to send his daughter to the number one culinary institute in America. The Patriots at Pebble Beach Golf tournament event raised $3 million dollars for the Scholarship Foundation.
Jade and her father are both active in helping with counseling and shared connections. SSgt Jones works with the adults and Jade helps the kids. Their combined efforts bring comfort and resources to the Marines and family members who have suffered through some of the inevitable consequences of military service.