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‘A way to teach children’: Planting flags at vet’s graves

Josie Jacobs, 8, plants a flag at a veteran's grave at Macedonia Cemetery on Veterans Day.With a bundle of American flags in hand, 8-year-old Josie Jacobs pronounced with conviction the headstone’s inscription: “Charles L. Jordan, Florida, U.S. Marine Corps …”

The youth from Glen St. Mary then sank one of the flags into the ground next to the marker.

On Veterans Day, Josie Jacobs, along with her mother Laura Jacobs, and two older sisters, Brandi and Rachel Harrison, 16 and 14 respectively, adorned the graves of many veterans laid to rest in the Macedonia Cemetery with the Stars and Stripes.

In recent years, the family has made similar trips to the South Prong and Olustee cemeteries for Veterans Day or Memorial Day to honor local deceased veterans.

Last Sunday was their first such trip to Macedonia, which is located off CR 23C and abuts the South Prong of the St. Mary’s River.

It’s where Laura Jacobs’ uncle, Air Force veteran Leon Mobley, is buried. He’s one of the many men in her family who served in the military going back four-plus Brandi Harrison adorns a veteran's grave with a red, white and blue cap.generations.

“It’s a way to teach the children about Veterans Day and the importance of remembering veterans for their service to our country,” Mrs. Jacobs said before the group weaved their way through the property, looking for veteran’s graves without flags.

“It’s sad to see the ones with no flowers or flags,” she said.

After walking more than two thirds of the cemetery and distributing dozens of flags and red, white and blue caps, the ladies ran out of materials.

The flags, about 40 large ones and a number of smaller ones, and the hats came from Laura Jacobs’ husband, who distributes them at Tea Party rallies. Next year, she plans to bring more.

She said her heart goes out to the veterans whose family members may have passed on or moved away from the area, leaving their graves without Old Glory flying overhead.

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Teen zombies takeover historic jail

History Club students prepare for opening night of the Haunted Jail October 26.Zombies and inmates infected by the flesh-eating monsters took over the historic jail on McIver Street in Macclenny for three nights recently, capping the run on Halloween.

The annual Haunted Jail fund raiser benefits the Baker County Historical Society and the Baker High History Club. Club sponsor Mark Hartley said the goal was to raise $3000 during the event, half for the society and half for the club.

This year’s Haunted Jail featured both floors at the old jail — upstairs are the zombies and downstairs their maligned offspring, the inmates — for the first time.

Mr. Hartley said attendance on the first two nights were about average, but he expected many more for Halloween.

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Homecoming 2012

Homecoming fever took over central Macclenny late last week beginning with a parade down US 90 to Memorial Stadium where the Cat Growl pep rally took place immediately afterwards on October 18. Here are some of the images from the festivities, but more are available for viewing and ordering prints here.

All-American Twirling Academy performers.Bucs youth cheerleaders.

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Sanderson country singer to open for Colt Ford Thursday

Justin FreemanJustin Freeman of Sanderson is about to play one of the biggest shows of his young country music career in Gainesville.

Mr. Freeman, 30, preformed before to his largest audience at the Suwannee River Jam in 2011 opening for Blackberry Smoke, and also takes the stage at Jack Rabbits in Jacksonville’s San Marco neighborhood and the Country Club Lounge in Macclenny on occasion.

But on Thursday, October 18 at the Florida Theatre, the Baker County native will open for the Athens, GA-born country rapper Colt Ford. The show begins at 8 pm. Tickets are $25.

Mr. Freeman began his full-time music career in 2009 after a tumultuous period in his life. He lost his job as a graphic designer after eight years and went through a divorce.

“When everything was falling apart, or so it seemed, I was able to focus my attention on writing and producing,” said the budding singer-songwriter in an interview with The Press.

“It definitely helped me move on and get through one of the toughest times of my life. Music is the thing that can get people through any situation. I hope someone hears some of my songs and can relate and know they aren’t alone in their situation,” he said.

Mr. Freeman recalled one instance when a U.S. soldier approached him after a show about his song, “Since You’ve Been Gone.”

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