WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - American Legion Post 68 Leland has changed its name to John E. Jacobs American Legion Post 68, Leland.
Private First Class John Edwin Jacobs was a soldier in the U.S. Army and the only resident of Leland killed in the Vietnam War.
Jacobs was born in Leland on December 4, 1947. He was a 1967 graduate of what was formerly known as Lincoln High School.
He was drafted into the U.S. Army in March 1968. Following training, he was assigned to B Company, 1st Battalion, 1st Brigade, 5th Infantry Division as a Combat Infantryman and departed for Vietnam in September of that same year. While on patrol in Quang Tri Province, South Vietnam on October 1, 1968, his unit was ambushed, and Pfc John Edwin Jacobs was killed by small arms fire.
He was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart and was laid to rest in his family’s private cemetery near the family home on Hooper Road, where a memorial now marks the resting place of their hero. He was also awarded the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, Vietnam Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Service Medal, and National Defense Service.
Pfc Jacobs is listed on panel 42W, line 057 of the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, DC.
To mark the renaming of Post 68, the Jacobs family and Post 68 will sponsor a reception to celebrate John’s life. The reception will be held on December 14 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Brunswick Community College Leland Center.
Jacob’s parents, John and Mildred Jacobs of Hooper Road, and sister, Reverend Martha Jacobs, a former Pastor of the community, are honored.
“Our loved one, a soldier, never dies as long as he is remembered. God does everything for a reason; the solemnity of Post 68’s action is heartwarming. The family gratitude is beyond any words that we can express,” said Rev. Jacobs.