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Milwaukee icon Gwen T. Jackson passes away at age of 90

Posted at 2:05 PM, Mar 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-26 15:13:43-04

One of the most well-known American Red Cross volunteers from Milwaukee has died at the age of 90. Gwen Jackson dedicated her life to serving others.

Jackson's service spans longer than 50 years and has earned her numerous local and nationwide recognition. After retiring from Brill Inc. in 1981, Jackson became busier than ever.

She volunteered for the Department of Aging, where she volunteered for several agencies from the YWCA to the Greater Milwaukee Foundation to the Girl Scouts of America.

Jackson also spent more than 50 years volunteering with the American Red Cross. She was the first and only African-American to serve as national chairman of volunteers, one of the highest volunteer positions in the organization.

Gwen T. Jackson black and white photo

Most notably, Jackson was involved in support during national disasters such as Hurricane Hugo and for service members during the Persian Gulf War.

In 2009, Milwaukee's 21st Street School was renamed the Gwen T. Jackson Early Childhood and Elementary School.

It was a big deal to a woman who positively impacted the lives of thousands.

"I think it's important we start our lives out understanding how important it is to love children and to be well endowed with information," Jackson told TODAY'S TMJ4's Carole Meekins in 2009.