Memorial Day Has Added Significance For Topeka Widow

By: Justin Surrency Email
By: Justin Surrency Email

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW)__People around the country took time to honor service members who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.

For Melissa Jarboe, Memorial Day has a fresh, personal significance.

Reflecting on her husband, Sgt. Jamie Jarboe, Melissa says "He'd do it again, he had no regrets."

Memorial Day comes once a year, but the gold star in the front window and letter from President Barack Obama in Melissa Jarboe's home are constant reminders of her husband Sgt. Jamie Jarboe.

She said, "It's not just a three day weekend, its everyday for us and the kids when we wake up and go to sleep, we live it."

In April of 2011, a sniper in Afghanistan left her husband paralyzed from the chest down. Complications from surgeries and infections took his life in March of 2012.

After losing Jaimie, Memorial day had a new meaning. "Everything changed. After his initial injury, that following Memorial Day was impacted to us," said Melissa.

Since Jamie's passing, Melissa has developed the Jamie Jarboe Foundation and dedicated herself full-time to assisting military families battling P.T.S.D. and suicide prevention.

She said, "It's a way to live vicariously through these families. To give them options we may not have had, and gives them a chance to live, love and honor their military veterans.

The window sill is littered with pictures, memorabilia and achievements from Sgt. Jarboe's career. A testament to his commitment to the country he loved.

She said, "I never met anyone so selfless. He chose to sacrifice and he was o.k. taking that bullet. So everyday I see that area it makes me want to do something to make a difference just like he did."

Melissa Jarboe has a book ready to hit stores in September, called "Sacrificed".

You can also donate to the Jamie Jarboe Foundation by visiting

Their next project is a Veterans Day Parade for Topeka on November 11, 2013.

More information can be found on the website.

631 SW Commerce Pl. Topeka, Kansas 66615 phone: 785-272-6397 fax: 785-272-1363 email:
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