Each year I am honored to highlight military heroes from the 32nd Congressional District of Texas who have valiantly served our nation and have made selfless sacrifices for the freedoms that we enjoy as Americans. During this season of thanks I would like to remember our brave men and women in uniform and their families and thank them for their invaluable contribution to our nation.
Major Jacob "Jake" Duff, USAF
Major Jake Duff graduated third in his class from Palestine High School in 1999. He then attended the United States Air Force Academy and graduated in 2003. After earning his wings, he went to school in Little Rock, Arkansas, to become a C-130 pilot. He first served in combat in 2005, flying a C-130 H "Hercules". After several years he became a pilot for JSOC (Joint Special Forces Command), flying the C-130 "Talon". While serving in JSOC he participated in the successful rescue of two aid workers in Somalia, a story that is highlighted by one of the aide workers, Jessica Buchanan, in her book Impossible Odds.
Major Duff has served in combat every year since 2005. He is currently stationed in Leavenworth, Kansas, where he attends Joint Command School. His wife, Josie Harshe Duff, RN, BN was commissioned as a Lieutenant on August 25, 2015, where Jake had the honor of giving her the oath, and will soon be attending COT (commissioned officers training).
Lieutenant Scott Jones, USN
Scott Jones attended Jesuit College High School in Dallas, Texas, where he graduated in 2006. He then went on to the U.S. Naval Academy and graduated with a degree in Aerospace Engineering. After the Naval Academy he completed a year of Naval Nuclear Power training in Charleston, South Carolina, and five weeks training as a Navy SCUBA Diving Officer in Panama City, Florida. Scott was stationed on the fast attack submarine USS Norfolk in Norfolk, Virginia, for three years and completed two six-month deployments to the European, African, and Middle Eastern theaters. Currently he is enjoying the food and weather at the Sixth Fleet Headquarters in Naples, Italy, for two years.
1st Lieutenant Trevor Hodges, USA
Trevor is a 2009 graduate of Richardson High School in Richardson, Texas. After graduating from West Point in 2013, he remained at the Academy for six months as a Graduate Assistant. Trevor was then stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia, where he graduated from the Armor Basic Officer Leadership Course in May 2014. He then joined the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division at Camp Casey in the Republic of South Korea. Following his tour in Korea Trevor returned to the United States and is now stationed in Fort Hood, Texas. Trevor currently serves as the Company Executive Officer for D Company, 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division.