MADISON, Wis.—Dec. 23, 2021—The Green Bay Packers and WPS Health Solutions are paying special tribute this week to U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Jack Zimmerman, age 20, in conjunction with the Dec. 25 game against Cleveland. Operation Fan Mail, the program that recognizes military families and veterans at each Packers home game, marks its 15th season in 2021.
Zimmerman, from Kingsford, Mich., joined the Marine Corps in 2019. He was present during the Aug. 26, 2021, troop evacuation in Kabul, Afghanistan. Working at the Abbey Gate to the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, he was among the military personnel who were attacked by a suicide bomber wearing a 25-pound explosive vest. Zimmerman was hit with shrapnel, shot at by gunmen, yet carried and assisted others who were wounded or killed in action. Three of his friends were among the 13 U.S. service members and 60 Afghans killed in the attack. They were David Espinoza, Kareem Nikoui, and his roommate, Rylee McCollum. Zimmerman was awarded the Purple Heart for his injuries. Zimmerman is currently stationed at Camp Pendleton in San Diego, Calif.
In his nomination essay, Zimmerman’s older brother, Zachary Zimmerman, said, “I think being recognized for his brave and selfless actions will help him understand how much of a hero he is.” Both brothers are lifelong Packers fans and are looking forward to the game on Christmas Day. “We will be there,” Zachary said. “Thank you for considering my little brother, my hero.”
As the honoree for Operation Fan Mail this week, Zimmerman also received four tickets to the game and a $150 Packers Pro Shop gift card, courtesy of WPS.
The program, which debuted in 2007, is designed to honor families with a member who is on active duty, or a member who is a veteran. The Packers and WPS Health Solutions will host a family at each 2021 home game and recognize the members on the video boards during pregame activities. A total of 145 individuals, families, or groups have been recognized through the program since it began.
If you know someone whose bravery, sacrifice, and dedication deserves to be honored, WPS Health Solutions and the Packers invite you to submit an application. To apply, share an essay of 500 words or less describing why a particular family should be saluted at operationfanmail.com.
Essays can also be sent to:
Operation Fan Mail
P.O. Box 10628
Green Bay, WI, 54307-0628.
The appearance of U.S. military visual information does not imply or constitute endorsement by the U.S. military.
To see a gallery of past honorees, visit OperationFanMail.com.