Veterans providing free meals to homeless at Borrell Park on Saturday

Posted at 6:10 PM, Feb 08, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-08 18:10:35-05

TAMPA, Fla. — A group of veterans and volunteers are working to help homeless people by providing a free meal this weekend. This is just one event they’re putting on with their own money.

“Hey what's up y'all, how you doing? You remember us huh, you remember us huh?” Anthony Jackson said, to a crowd of people in Borrell Park. 

His face is now becoming familiar to the people he’s helping. 

"Free pizza out here for everybody okay? So make sure you tell your friends, come on out free pizza," Jackson said.

Anthony Jackson and James Thorpe are both veterans as well. Now, they’re in a mission to feed the hungry through The Action Jackson Foundation. They’re used to shaking hands and passing out flyers. This past Christmas Eve, they treated more than 30 people to a meal and hotel rooms in Tampa. Jackson said, you may not know it now, but he was once homeless. 

"It really humbled me to you know live in my car and didn't have any place to go anywhere to turn to, and so basically I was homeless for about six months," Jackson said.

Now the pair is looking to serve more than 300 people Saturday in Borrell Park. They’re spreading the word with police officers, at local hangouts and through word of mouth. 

"To see all the veterans come out give them a meal like wow I'm not left behind," Thorpe said.

The gesture of this meal means a lot to Ed, a military veteran, who isn’t homeless now but said he has been. 

"It makes your stomach feel better for one thing and then it makes a whole lot of people who do appreciate and they'll thank them," Ed said.

Jackson and Thorpe aren’t in it for the thanks, just to serve a bit of comfort to the people who have served our country.

"Lets them know that they they have a meal for today they don't have to go out and try to scavenge or see how they're going to make ends meet for today to find a meal," Jackson said.

Food will be served Saturday at Borrell Park at 3 p.m.