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On Thanksgiving Eve, USF’s Vincent Jackson will serve up benevolence

The Bulls fifth-year senior will serve a holiday meal to approximately 70 people
USF defensive end Vincent Jackson (15) intends to serve a meal to dozens in the community tonight at the original Columbia Restaurant. [Times files]
USF defensive end Vincent Jackson (15) intends to serve a meal to dozens in the community tonight at the original Columbia Restaurant. [Times files]
Published Nov. 21, 2018
Updated Nov. 21, 2018

Two days before putting his hand in the dirt one last time at Raymond James Stadium, Bulls DE Vincent Jackson is lending it to the less fortunate in his community.

The fifth-year senior and Jesuit High alumnus plans to serve a holiday meal to approximately 70 people tonight at his inaugural "15 for 15" Thanksgiving at the original Columbia Restaurant in Ybor City. Jackson, who wears No. 15, initially planned to serve 15 people, but that number ultimately quintupled.

"I wanted to start my non-profit last year to assist people during the holidays," said Jackson, who turns 23 on Saturday and already has graduated from USF.

"I didn't get it done on time. So this year instead of doing something like raising money for a good drive I wanted to actually have a dinner for the families instead, because some of them probably couldn't cook it on their own."

Those being fed include victims of domestic violence, foster families and others struggling this time of year, Jackson said. The Columbia, owned by fellow Jesuit alumnus Richard Gonzmart, is donating the food.