What's New With the Alumni
Welcome Home, Jerry Jacob, Class of 1983
|Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012
Jerry Jacob (son of Tony and Grace Jacob) left his job at the anchor desk of KY3 in Springfield, MO five years ago to join the United States Army.
Jerry has returned to KY3 and was recently interviewed:
Today's a happy day here at KY3. Our friend and fellow co-worker, Jerry Jacob is officially back on the job. It's been a long five years since Jerry left us to join the Army. It was five years that took him to three different countries, two wars and on a U-S humanitarian mission.
Here are just a few snapshots of where Jerry's been and how he's been serving our country. January 2007....From the anchor desk to an army tent....basic training was just the beginning of Jerry's military education.
By graduation from boot camp, he was at the top of his class with honors in academics, physical fitness, and leadership. Then came his Advanced Individual Training as a medic. It was a major career change at the age of 42. Possible, only because the army had just raised the age limit for enlistees.
It was a decision Jerry never took lightly. "This wasn't a stunt, crazy vacation, something to talk about...this was a career change," said Jerry. The medical training was intense, but so were the months that followed.
There was airborne school, schools for special weapons tactics, HALO jumps, and Air Assault training. All leading up to that first deployment that finally came in October of 2008, to Iraq. As a medic, it didn't matter where the battle had been, Jerry had a front row seat to the worst parts of war.
He says he always wondered why, when they all came back from World War II and never talked about their time at war in Europe. Now Jerry says he knows why. He says thinking and talking about what you’ve witnessed just makes you sad.
As 2009 ended, so did Jerry's tour of duty in Iraq. Then came the devastating earthquake in Haiti. By January 2010, Jerry found himself in the middle of a U-S humanitarian mission. He said the devastation was indescribable. It was another life-changing experience. He said, "you can't imagine…to live amongst that. You can't experience that and not come back here and just feel so lucky every single day. Things that used to bother you don't and never will."
After several months of hard labor in Haiti, Jerry was beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Only 2 more years to go of his five year stint in the military. But he knew his turn was coming for another deployment.
Later that same year, Jerry was in Afghanistan. It was a dangerous year to be in Afghanistan, a year of service that took him right up to the end of his military career. Five years of service, five years full of life lessons that Jerry says began with good training.
This is what the U-S Army does best according to Sgt. Jerry Jacob. "Fantastic training...." he says. He adds: "there's a saying in the army...training is not something we do it is what we do."
The importance of that good training was a lesson Jerry learned time and again....from basic training to Advanced individual training in field medicine. "There was not one situation the entire time at war or in Haiti, that I hadn't practiced dozens if not hundreds of times," said Jerry. It was the kind of practice that saved lives once Jerry was deployed to Iraq.
That's when lesson number two became crystal clear. "Preparation,” Jerry said....”very important." Having a plan he says in case something goes wrong is critical on the battlefield and in everyday life. He explains, "a fire in your house what would you do? Someone broke into your house...would you be ready?
Training and preparation made Jerry successful from the beginning of his military service. But, he says the importance of good leadership also became apparent very quickly. “The importance of people stepping up getting on a white horse and saying follow me....because if you look at the success or failure of any entity, just look at the leaders.”
From Iraq to Haiti to Afghanistan, all three of Jerry's deployments offered their own unique challenges. But together they taught him one of the most important lessons in life. “Make decisions good...not make good decisions. Was it good or bad to join army that was dictated by what I did once I got in the army not by decision itself,” said Jerry.
Jerry's most recent decision to come back to KY3 was never a sure thing. He said it was a difficult decision in that he had been there, done that. But he says it's like coming back to his family here in the Ozarks. And if you know Jerry, you know his return to KY3 is a decision he'll "make good" for KY3's viewing family.
Jerry will be covering political news, working on special projects, as well as filling in on the anchor desk when he's needed."
Link to story on KSDK: http://www.ksdk.com/news/article/307088/3/Local-news-anchor-back-at-work-after-joining-the-Army
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