Not many 13 year olds can say they have spoken at the Capitol and the Lincoln Memorial. In 2003, after the war in Iraq and Afghanistan began, Congress passed a law stating that nothing else could go in the National Mall. This site is home to iconic monuments including the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument. […]
Raised for most of his childhood in Perryville and Jackson, Missouri, Staff Sergeant Jedidiah “Jay” Vermillion, USMC always thought he would become a Marine. His grandfather was a Marine, fighting in the epic battle on Iwo Jima during World War II. His dad was also a Marine, fighting through the jungles of Vietnam. There was, however, one hurdle to his goal of following in the footsteps of his personal heroes – his father telling him that he could do anything in this life….except become a Marine. So, Jay continued his teenage life, including as a star linebacker on the high school football team (earning a scholarship to Frostburg State University in Maryland), putting any thoughts of becoming a Marine out of his current plans, but never out of sight.
In August, 1999, SSGT Vermillion could not ignore his calling as a Marine any longer. He joined the Marine Corps because his father and grandfather were his heroes and he wanted to be just like them—Marines through and through who always conducted themselves as Marines. His first deployment came not long after the attacks of 9/11. On a patrol in Al Fallujah, Iraq in 2005, SSGT Vermillion was hit by a “triple stack IED,” – -three 105mm artillery shells. Later in that tour of duty, SSGT Vermillion was hit again by another IED. At the early stages in the long war on terror, traumatic brain injuries were not given the attention they deserved. At the time, it was considered normal to have severe headaches and other side effects of an explosion. If the Marine could walk, they might be allowed to rest for a week, but then they were put back into the fight because all available warriors were needed in those days, and continue to bring the fight to the enemy is exactly what SSGT Vermillion did. In 2010, SSGT Vermillion was the Platoon Sergeant in charge of his detachment during a second combat tour, this time in Afghanistan. During a vehicle mounted patrol on July 13, 2010, in Marjah, Afghanistan, SSGT’s Vermillion’s vehicle was hit with an improvised explosive device (IED) comprised of 100 pounds of homemade explosives. He was thrown head first into the back of his vehicle and lost consciousness. His vehicle was so damaged, and SSGT Vermillion in such a bad condition, that those who initially came to his rescue assumed that he had been killed. Showing the bravery and determination that drives him to this day, Jay fought for his life and survived this incredible blast.
Jay is supported in his recovery by a beautiful family. Jay also gains strength from his loving children, Jedidiah, Cole, and Lyla, who all have learned so much about honor, bravery, strength, and perseverance, from their dad.
Jay, Jedidiah, Cole, and Lyla, we could not be more proud that you have become part of the JCS family and we are honored to welcome SSGT Vermillion, USMC as our 10th JCS Hero!
Keep up with Jay
Schaefer Autobody recently donated 4 vehicles to our JCS Heroes. This is the third year that Schaefer Autobody has worked with Travelers Insurance to provide much needed vehicles to our JCS Heroes. Please click on the link to learn more: Schaefer Autobody
Taylor graduated from The University of Missouri with her Education Degree and is pursuing her Masters Degree from Lindenwood University. Taylor teaches the Fifth Grade at New Haven Elementary School. She currently lives in Washington, Mo where she remodeled her entire home. JCS was able to establish connections to contractors to help Taylor make the […]
The JCS family just keeps growing! Please welcome Elijah Nicely. Dad, CPL. Todd Nicely, and mom, Michele, are all doing well and settling into this new crazy life! Congratulations! Elijah Nicholas – October 20, 2020 – 7 pounds 10 ounces – 20 inches long
Congratulations to Hero CPL. Tyler Huffman and his bride Amanda on their wedding! We are so excited for the both of you.
Congratulations to the Vermillion Family on your new ride! Thank you to the largest contributors like NABC Recycled Rides, Travelers Insurance, Schaefer Autobody, and Scott Schaefer, Alex Alyatim, Colleen Lawler, Jack Lawler, Matt Koke, Gail Schroeder, Danielle Horton, Tommy Tedesco, Cottrell Fox, James Forshey. See the video of our day here: https://www.facebook.com/JCSociety/videos/432819764747131.
Read Don’s final blog post here: “My adventure has come to a close. I am home and just want to wrap up a few thoughts. Many of you know about my trials and attempts at crossing the US. Those times while disappointing to me taught me a lot about things. I love to ride my […]
JCS is working to evaluate further precautions we will take to ensure the safety of our guests, Heroes, and staff for upcoming events. For the Price of Freedom Gala, foremost, safety precautions will include providing face masks to all guests and hand sanitizer will be readily available. As we are sure has been common in other areas of […]
What a rare and humbling opportunity. Two Medal of Honor recipients spoke at the Nashville Gala on November 2nd. Medal of Honor Recipients, James C. McCloughan, Specialist 5 United States Army and David Bellavia, Staff Sergeant United States Army. They were absolutely amazing, and you could have heard a pin drop while they were speaking. David [...]
On November 8, 2019 Sgt. Michael Shuster U.S. Army was the recipient of a Ford Escape via the recycled rides program. The Shuster family applied for the program in July. In partnership, Schaeffer Autobody Centers, Travelers Insurance, and Enterprise Rent-a-Car provided the Shuster family with a more reliable vehicle. The Recycled Rides program works to donate […]