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Oklahoman sends Passover in a box to a Jewish Marine serving in Afghanistan

Oklahoman Sherri Jackson reaches across the boundaries of faith traditions to send a care package of Passover foods and gifts to a Jewish Marine serving in Afghanistan.
by Carla Hinton Modified: April 13, 2014 at 8:34 pm •  Published: April 14, 2014
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“For someone to adopt a soldier is amazingly caring of her. It’s about stepping out of your comfort zone to make sure one of our soldiers is taken care of.”

Filling the box

Marwil said she gave Jackson information about Passover and some of the items that Spector might enjoy having.

So into the Passover box went matzah, the flat unleavened bread resembling crackers that is traditionally eaten during Passover. Matzah is an integral part of the Passover Seder because there was no time for dough prepared by the Israelite slaves to rise before they fled Egypt.

There was no time to tarry, as the story chronicled in the Book of Exodus goes.

Jackson said she found many Passover food items at Sprouts grocery in Norman, and she and her grandchildren made Spector chocolate mint matzah cookies using a matzah cake mix purchased there.

Marwil said she decided to send the Marine a yarmulke emblazoned with an American flag. A yarmulke, also known as a kippah, is a skull cap primarily worn by Jewish men. She and Jackson also decided to send him a Haggadah, which is a compilation of prayers, Bible passages, hymns and rabbinical literature that is read during the Passover Seder, a ceremony held in Jewish homes to commemorate the Israelite liberation from Egypt in biblical times.

Jackson purchased Passover sweets, and Marwil, Jacobson and another member of the synagogue wrote holiday greetings in Passover cards that also were sent to Spector.

Marwil said she was impressed with Jackson’s willingness to go out of her way to learn more about the faith traditions of her adopted Marine and to send him a holiday care package.

“I feel it’s a mitzvah — a good deed — to provide our servicemen with Passover food and items for the holidays,” she said. “Passover is a miracle, so it’s certainly wonderful to share that with other people.”

Jackson, a home health care aide, said she will continue to reach out to Spector during his deployment.

“I’d like to save the world, but I can’t,” she said. “These soldiers get to be like your kids. At least I can do my little part to make a difference in someone’s life.”

by Carla Hinton
Religion Editor
Carla Hinton, an Oklahoma City native, joined The Oklahoman in 1986 as a National Society of Newspaper Editors minority intern. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide...
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