Why not Jet, why not now?

State Representative Darryl Rouson recently submitted the following letter to the mayor and members of the city council requesting that the name of the Wildwood complex be renamed in Thomas “Jet” Jackson’s honor. What a terrific idea.

Mayor Rick Kriseman and Members of City Council,

Last Friday Mr. Thomas “Jet” Jackson was recognized for having given FIFTY years of service to the city and the community! He began working for the city part-time when he was only 14 years old and he continues his dedication as a role model in our community every day.

Recently I attended a 70th Birthday celebration for Mr. Jackson where members of the St. Petersburg community paid tribute to a man that commands huge respect. Although I was late getting there and had to leave for another event in Tampa, I moved through the crowd and heard people talking about what Mr. Jackson meant to them and the entire city.

As I drove away and passed Wildwood Recreation Center to get onto the interstate, it hit me that this recreation complex is where it all started for Mr. Jackson. This is where he learned to swim, taught others and became a lifeguard. He spent summers and time giving other children something to do so they could fine-tune their talents and stay out of trouble.

Mr. Jackson’s whole life has been about service to others. Even now, he cares for his family, his church and the larger community. There are few finer and more sensitive, caring men.

After discussion with several individuals, we should give Mr. Jackson his flowers and accolades while he yet lives. I am proposing that you investigate the renaming of the Wildwood Complex to The Thomas “Jet” Jackson Recreation Complex.

Since Jet is a constituent and the complex is in my legislative district, I would be honored to spearhead a campaign. There is no doubt that he is a historically significant person to this recreational complex.

I have reviewed sections of the St. Petersburg City Code, particularly 21-85, and it appears that this request may qualify if a majority of Council chooses to waive certain provisions.

I would like the opportunity to further discuss this matter.


Darryl E. Rouson, Esq.

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