Ryan Jensen (Center)
An appreciation for the military spans generations for Ryan Jensen, who has made Salute to Service a priority through everyday relationships and outreach initiatives. Jensen's military connections include his grandfather, who served in the Army in Vietnam and Korea; his uncle, who also served in the Army; and his adopted brother, who is currently serving in the Marine Corps and has completed two tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. In 2014, Jensen, then a member of the Baltimore Ravens, made a special bond with a five-year-old boy named Cooper, also the product of a military family. Cooper's father was tragically killed in action before he was born, and Jensen has maintained a special relationship with the young boy and his family through the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS). In 2019, Jensen honored Cooper and TAPS through the NFL's annual My Cause, My Cleats initiative and he plans to continue to bring greater awareness and support to Gold Star Families who are grieving the loss of a member of the armed forces. During his time with the Buccaneers, Jensen has visited MacDill Air Force Base on numerous occasions through the USO Central Florida and has been an active participant in a variety of team initiatives such as Military Day at Training Camp and the Schwarzkopf Military Family Awards, which honors military families from each branch of the armed forces. Jensen has sponsored a community ticket program named "Jensen's G.I. Joes" for military veterans to enjoy a special gameday experience at Raymond James Stadium, and he has visited local VA hospitals to lighten the spirits of veterans recovering from injury and illness.