SPOKEANE VALLEY, Wash. – A high school football coach welcomed a troubled student into his home, giving him a second chance in life.
“We always knew that there was a good person in there, but he didn’t have the support system,” said Jackie Fatur, athletics secretary for East Valley High School in Spokane, Washington.
Rodrick Jackson is a senior at East Valley High. He dropped out during his sophomore year and made the decision to leave his family. He told the Spokesman-Review the “difficulties were severe” at home, not wanting to get more specific than that.
He spent some time homeless and worked hard to find a permanent place to live. When nothing worked out, he turned to East Valley football coach, Adam Fisher, in January 2015.
“He went into full-on tears three times and composed himself three times,” Fisher said. “He told me he wanted to make life changes and wanted to play college football.”
Jackson said he was desperate for some love and structure in his life.
“Fisher had always been straightforward with me. I felt like there was nobody else I could ask that could help me,” said Jackson.
The Fishers got court-appointed oversight of Jackson, and he moved in with the family of five on March 2 that year. He’s been a part of the family ever since, obeying all the ground rules, doing his chores and even joining the family on vacation.
Jackson managed to turn his life around. He has maintained a 3.3 GPA and has plans of graduating high school and continuing on to college where he hopes to play football.
The Spokesman-Review reports that he has already been offered scholarships from colleges, contingent on him maintaining his grades.
“I have to pinch myself at times,” Jackson said. “God was looking out for me. This has been everything and more.”