Tacky Jack’s Helping Veterans program gives away fifth wheelchair

By Melanie LeCroy
Posted 8/21/19

If you have ever been to one of Tacky Jack’s locations, chances are you have taken a photo with the giant marlin and possibly dropped a donation in the box.

Those donations were used to …

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Tacky Jack’s Helping Veterans program gives away fifth wheelchair

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If you have ever been to one of Tacky Jack’s locations, chances are you have taken a photo with the giant marlin and possibly dropped a donation in the box.

Those donations were used to purchase a fifth wheelchair this month for the restaurant’s Helping Veterans program.

In 2010, the marlin became a fixture outside of the Orange Beach location and staff quickly noticed guests were using it as a photo op. The decision was made to add a donation box and help local charities. Now each location has a marlin and Tacky Jack’s matches the donations dropped in the box.

Jorge Tabares is a U.S. Army veteran who served in the infantry, Fort Benning, Ga. While on active duty, he took a bad fall resulting in 26 fractures in both legs and was honorably discharged.

In civilian life, Tabares has done many things from owning a tow truck company, working as a real estate agent to working construction. He enjoyed the outdoors and an active lifestyle until the injuries he sustained while on active duty later caused him to fall and break his neck. He does have some movement in his hands and legs, but not much.

The Action Track Chair Tabares received is an all-terrain wheelchair with tracks that look and act like those of a tank. The electric tilt mechanism allows the user to easily stay level while traversing hills and uneven terrain.

Thanks to the generosity of the public, donations from the Lower Alabama Parrot Heads and Treasures of the Isle Mardi Gras Society and Tacky Jack’s matching funds the $15,000 wheelchair will take Tabares wherever he wants to venture.