ATLANTA, GEORGIA—The local soccer community here is set to offer 101 percent support to the 2021 Father Christmas Cup scheduled on December 11 at the Atlanta Silverbacks Park.
According to reports, one of the beneficiaries of the annual soccer fundraiser, held each December to provide comfort and financial support for local Atlanta families that will be missing a parent for the first time over the holiday period is the family of a well-loved soccer-loving teacher who died on August 11, 2021.
Part of the proceeds of the well-loved soccer fundraiser will go to the family of Brian K. Jackson who began his career as a lawyer but ended up as a teacher for 19 years at Woodward Academy. Jackson was a long-time History teacher at the said educational institution where he is well-loved by his students.
With his death, Jackson left behind his wife of 19 years, Gina Calloway, 3 daughters-Angelena, Siena, Gisele Jackson, his mother and father-Doris Jackson and Joseph Jackson, step-father- Bernard Coachman, sisters-Kelly McCray, Carmen Dean, Tia Jackson, sister cousin-Barbara Raines, brothers-Kenneth Jackson, who preceded him in death, Malcolm and Peter Jackson and a host of uncles, aunts, cousins, nieces, nephews, and dear friends.
The organizers of the 2021 Father Christmas Cup want to ease the pain of the family left behind by Jackson by offering them comfort and some financial aid from this widely popular soccer fundraiser.
Sources said Jackson’s daughter plays soccer on the same team as Stevie Renwick’s daughter Riley which is coached by Campbell Chapman.
The Jackson family is also a big part of the local soccer community.
In this year’s edition of the Father Christmas Cup, Campbell’s team has a league game in the afternoon on December 11th, with a 30 min 8 v 8 squad game in Jackson’s honor at 10.30 am at the Stadium Field A.
The team will also be present for the Memorial ceremony at 11.30 am with the family.
This year’s Father Christmas Cup is being supported by the Atlanta United Foundation.
The United Foundation is a platinum sponsor of the annual soccer fundraiser held each December.
Aside from fun and games, the event will also memorialize those active in our soccer community that has passed within the previous 12 months.
The Atlanta Silverbacks organization has been a long-time sponsor of the event, generously donating
field space to host both a youth and adult soccer tournament.
Since this worthwhile event began, funds are generated from player participation donations, a sponsored player shirt, raffle proceeds, private donations made through the Father Christmas Cup website, and donations on the day of the event itself.
History and Origin of The Father Christmas Cup
The Father Christmas Cup came to be as a result of a discussion one night in September 2003 between a group of friends in a local pub, what was then the old Fado Fado, in the Buckhead bar district of Atlanta Georgia.
The discussion centered on the casualties from the war in Iraq and how that Christmas a family would be in mourning for a father missing for the first time during the Holiday season.
One of the groups recalled how soccer and war had been intertwined throughout the ages and we all remembered how during World War I, it was often cited that on Christmas Eve in 1915 a truce was struck between the Germans and the English to celebrate Christmas. The truce lasted Christmas Day and part of the following day- Boxing Day- and how an impromptu soccer game ensued in no-man’s land between the trenches.
The idea came about to hold a soccer match as a fundraiser to help a family that was missing their father for the first time. The first Father Christmas Cup has played in December 2003 and funds raised were donated anonymously to a soldier’s family.