John “Johnnie” Edward Jackson was born on August 30, 1914, in Rustburg, Virginia, the son of John W. and Bernice Price Jackson.1
Jackson married Callie Belle Giles on December 25, 1938, in Lynchburg, Virginia. He was a restaurant worker at that time.2 They divorced in 1942.3 He was a cook in a restaurant. He later met Albertine Weissenborn, who was born in Germany, during his first tour of duty in post-war Germany in 1947 and married her in 1954. During WWII, Albertine was drafted into the German Luftwaffe as a switchboard operator. She was later captured by the British Army. It was after her release at the end of the war and two year journey back to her home that she met Johnnie.
Albertine became a U.S. citizen in 1958. They moved to Savanna, Illinois, in 1964, where Jackson managed the mess hall at the Savanna Army Depot.4
Jackson registered for the draft in Lynchburg on October 6, 1940.5 He later enlisted in the U.S. Army on August 6, 1941, and served during World War II, the Korean Conflict and the Vietnam War. Sergeant First Class Jackson retired from the Army on June 1, 1969.6 He was awarded the Bronze Star Medal.7
The Bronze Star is the fourth highest ranking award a service member can receive for acts of heroism performed in ground combat against an enemy of the United States. The award is awarded in three categories: valor, merit and achievement. 8
Johnnie Edward Jackson died on June 19, 2002, at the Good Samaritan Nursing Home in Mt. Carroll, Illinois. He was living in Savanna, Illinois, at the time of his death. Jackson was survived by his wife, Albertine; two daughters, Ilona Jackson and Edina Morris; one son, Frank Video; three grandchildren; two sisters, Odelle and Victoria; and two brothers Collins and Charles.9