For many, Veterans Day is a day off from work or school to pay tribute to those who have risked their lives and served in the armed forces. "It's a day to honor our military veterans in the United States," Palo Alto police Sgt. Curtiss Jackson said. "Being a veteran myself, I think it's important."
Jackson, however, didn't take the day off. As many around the country honor veterans with parades, barbecues and other celebrations, Jackson is working to make sure the streets are safe in Palo Alto.
The 49-year-old has been with the Palo Alto Police Department for 21 years. He runs its Field Training Program, leads its firearms instruction program, and is an operator on the city's SWAT team. During his time with the military, Jackson was a flight engineer on a U.S. Navy P-3 crew stationed at Moffett Field in Mountain View. He also was stationed on a number of islands throughout the Pacific Ocean, including Hawaii.
He is one of a number of veterans in the department, he said. "We just thank each other for our service and we go on about our business," Jackson said. "We're happy we're able to serve this country."
While Jackson doesn't do anything formal for Veterans Day, he makes sure to keep in touch with friends he has served with.
"I think it was an honor to serve in the military," Jackson said. "It's a calling."
Although that is not to say Jackson is not recognized on this day. He still has people come up to him thanking him for his service.
"It does make you feel appreciated," Jackson said.