Jacksons absent from annual Thanksgiving brunch for vets - FOX 32 News Chicago

Jacksons absent from annual Thanksgiving brunch for vets

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

"Battle-worn" is how one Rainbow Push Coalition senior staff member described Reverend Jesse Jackson Sr. who, along with his son - now former Representative Jesse Jackson Jr., was noticeably absent from his own Thanksgiving Day brunch honoring veterans. The event comes just one day after Jackson Jr. submitted his resignation amid health issues and a looming federal probe on his campaign funds.

"We congratulate Congressman Jackson on the work that he's done over the 17 years in Congress and now we're concerned that he improve his health and take the time to do that. We were born in crisis, born out of struggle and so we know that our God has not left us and God will continue to lift this family and carry us through," said Janette Wilson, Senior Advisor to Reverend Jesse Jackson Sr.

Each year at Rainbow Push headquarters veterans are served meals on Thanksgiving Day and despite Jackson Jr.'s legal woes, this year was no exception but it was a table topic for some in attendance.

"It's a very sad day for them, they've done a lot, they have a spirit of service and this is about them, they've put this together," said City Treasurer, Stephanie Neely.

"I really offer them a prayer and good wishes - this is a time where we all have trouble in our lives and things happen and I just hope they'll be able to overcome the problems that they have," said James Roberts, a Navy veteran.

Celebrity chefs including Chicago's own Judson Allen greeted and served those who have served the armed forces protecting our freedoms here at home.

"Knowing that my grandfather and my father served for their country and now being able to give back for Thanksgiving to some of the most deserving people is truly an honor," said Allen.

It's the small things that Richard Walker and others are thankful for...

"Being alive, waking up this morning," said Walker, an Army veteran.

In their absence, surely the Jackson family is thankful for their staff's support at time when they need it the most.

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