Alcaraz surprised with parade upon returning home
Marine Staff Sgt. a 2004 SHS grad
The Morris community honored Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Jacob Alcaraz, Morris resident and 2004 Seneca Township High School graduate, with a welcome home parade Wednesday, June 6.
“It was a total surprise (for him),” said Jacob’s mother, Mary Alcaraz.
Family, friends and community members accompanied by the American Legion Riders and Patriot Guard Riders paraded from the Walmart in Morris to the Morris VFW Post 6049 Wednesday evening. Jacob’s name was also put on some business’ marquees in town, as well.
Jacob left in July 2004 for boot camp at Camp Pendleton, Calif., just a few months after graduating from SHS.
Over the course of eight years, he was stationed at Camp Legeune, N.C., Parris Island, S.C. and Okinawa, Japan. He served two tours of duty overseas, once in Iraq and once in Afghanistan.
Jacob participated in both Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.
“His dad and I are really proud of everything he’s done,” Mary said. “He served because he’s proud of who he is and that makes us proud of who he is, too.”
Jacob did not feel he deserved the attention, so he opted not to speak with a reporter about his time in the military, but his mom said he was “very happy” when he saw the group of people gathered to honor him earlier this month.
Returning home with Jacob was his wife, Kim (Morrow), also a 2004 Seneca High School graduate, and their dog, Chimi, a 140-pound English Mastiff.
To welcome home all three Alcaraz family members this weekend, another get-together will be hosted at the VFW in Morris, Saturday, June 23, from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Mary said everyone is welcome to stop by and welcome home her son, daughter-in-law and “grandpuppy.”