Bucs wide receiver Vincent Jackson is a man of many voices and talents. Jackson has been working on character voices in preparation for hosting 80 children of military parents for his "Youth in Action" camp at One Buc Place.
The kids were treated with a morning of activities, including story time with the Jacksons as they debuted their first children's book, 'Danny Dogtags -- Dealing with Deployment.'
Jackson is used to being on the big NFL stage, but admits reading to a large group of kids is tougher.
"The football stuff comes natural," said Jackson. "[Lindsey] is a pro at it, but the more in more I get in front of those kids, they make it easy."
Danny Dogtags is a book about dealing with deployment, with all of the proceeds going to his Action Jackson charity. Jackson knows first-hand the challenges of growing up in a military family. Helping young children understand their role and how they can help their family is his message.
"It's about being good citizens," explained Jackson. "Not talking the 'woe is me' approach to it. Being sad is OK. It's OK being open with your emotions, but how can you turn that into positives."
Writing a book for the first time didn't come easy for Pro Bowl receiver or his wife, who's a school teacher. The book took a year and a half.
"We sat down, we wrote it together," said Lindsey. "We edited together. We sent it to the publishers together. We went to the meetings with the Bucs together. So it's been a true labor of love. Our name isn't just stamped on it. It's really our book from our heart."
The Vincent Jackson Foundation is all about education and exercise. While Jackson feels most comfortable working with the kids on the field, he's looking forward to more books in the future.
"We thought we'd try to make it a three-part adventure," he continued. "Add some different aspects of what Danny could do being a military kid, but it could grow from that."
The early reviews get high-five's from some of the 80 campers and many leave with a valuable message.
"When your parent deploys, stay strong and help out around the house, because he or she will come back sooner or later," said 9-year-old McKenna Cobb.
It's hard to tell who enjoyed the morning the most -- the little kids or Jackson, who's still a kid a heart.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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