Breaking News
More () »

Jacksonville native continues his family's legacy in the military

Dontay Thomas is an active duty sailor from Jacksonville native who is currently based in San Diego and continuing his family's proud military history.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — It's an honor to share the Stories of Service of the brave men and women who wear military uniforms for the United States. In this week's Stories of Service we head out to the Pacific Ocean to meet a young man from Jacksonville who continues his family's proud military tradition in the Navy.

"The military has helped my family so much over the years," said Airman Dontay Thomas.

Thomas is from Jacksonville, based in San Diego and has many family members who served in the military including his mom, cousins, aunts and uncles.

"My uncle, he was in the Navy, he's a product of the Navy and he's my mentor, like a father figure in my life," said Thomas, "he's definitely guided me all my life."

Thomas is making his own mark while he serves. During a Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service event Thomas spoke to the crew aboard the amphibious assault carrier USS Tripoli (LHA 7) about what that day means to him.

"It was awesome and heartwarming to give a talk about Martin Luther King Jr Day," recalled Thomas, "good experience, I did enjoy it, I read my lines and it felt good doing it."

While he's in the Navy he hopes to become an officer and work towards his master's degree. When he found out that he was being interviewed by First Coast News and that this story would be shown on tv in Jacksonville he had a message for his family back in his hometown.

"Hi mom, hi grandma, hi auntie, hi uncle, everybody else, I love you guys!" 

If you have a Story of Service that you would like us to preview, please send us an email to storiesofservice@firstcoastnews.com.

Before You Leave, Check This Out