Elks Lodge unveils memorial for Jason Johnston in Albion
Johnston is only soldier from Orleans County killed in Afghanistan
ALBION – The Elks Lodge in Albion on Saturday morning unveiled a memorial in honor of Jason Johnston of Albion, who was killed in Afghanistan on Dec. 26, 2009.
He is the only soldier from Orleans County who died in action in either Afghanistan or Iraq.
Johnston was 24 when he was killed by a roadside bomb the day after Christmas in Arghandab, Afghanistan.
Specialist Johnston was on his second deployment. He was also a paratrooper. He completed a 13-month-deployment in 2008 and left again for the war-torn country in October 2009.
The Elks do a motorcycle ride each year to raise funds for a memorial scholarship for Johnston. The Elks give a $1,000 scholarship to a graduating senior pursuing a helping profession.
Jenny Johnston, Jason’s mother, said she appreciates the memorial for the son.
“It is absolutely beautiful,” she said today. “It’s amazing that they would do that and keep his memory alive.”
The monument states: “In honor of Spc. Jason M. Johnston, 82nd Airborne U.S. Army. Orleans County’s only soldier killed in action since Vietnam. May his spirit keep this country and county safe. A truly honored soldier. One man in one unselfish act to save us all.”