Jadon Jahnke does it his way

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By Charm Carpenter

Griswold senior Jadon Jahnke is one of a kind. Two things stick out about Jadon, and one is uncommon for kids his age: he loves track and Frank Sinatra.


Someone To Watch Over Me
“I love track, the running aspect, because it’s all mental,” Jahnke said. “It’s all about toughness. I’ve watched my older brothers for years run, throw, and do stuff, and it always made me want to do that when I got older.”
Jahnke has three older brothers and one younger brother.
“Growing up there was definitely competition between us. My older brothers picked on me a lot, but I’ve always looked up to them. There was a lot of roughhousing. We put Mama through everything,” he laughed.
Chase, Jordan, and Cam all played football and track.
“Chase and Jordan are closer in age to me, and I looked up to them immensely,” Jadon said. “They’ve been inspirational and got me into weightlifting, running, sports, and computer science. They shaped me.”
Now it is Jadon’s turn to help shape his younger brother Cade.
“I lead the practices and try to set the pace of the workouts,” Jadon said. “These younger kids want to slack off. I try to bring back what I remember when I was their age. I try to set the same examples that were set for me.”
My Kind of Town
“When I was growing up, Griswold track was the thing, and that’s why I fell in love with it. We’re a small town, but we are good at this. That’s what made me want to run track.”
That’s Life
This is the final year that Griswold is a member of the Western Iowa Conference, as they join the Corner Conference in the fall.
“I’m glad I experienced what I’ve experienced,” Jadon explained. “I like going against the bigger schools because it pushes you to do better. Winning is one thing, but the competition is another. I like the bigger meets with more competition.”
High Hopes
“I am looking forward to kicking some butt this year,” Jadon said. “My goal is to jump 22’ in the long jump. The school record is 22.5 or something like that. It would be a dream to break the record, but if I could break 22 I would be pumped.”
My Way
“I like being different; standing out. I was growing my hair out for 2 and a half years and I loved it. It was so soft. It was also my identifier; the kids from other schools called me ‘The Flow.’ But I knew coming into this year that I didn’t want to compete with it. It’s a hassle during the shuttle [hurdle relay]. You can’t see when your partner comes in and it could get you DQ’d. Its just a lot of hair.
“I knew I was going to donate it and I chose to donate it to Pantene because they don’t charge customers for the wigs; they just donate the wigs.”
Night and Day
The difference in his looks, as seen above, is like night and day.
“Even my grandparents thought I was my older brother,” Jadon said.
It Was a Very Good Year
During the football season, Jahnke gained 1,011 rushing yards with 10 touchdowns.
Last year in track, Jahnke was first in the conference in the high jump with 6-1, and ended second in the conference long jump with 21’. The shuttle hurdle relay team placed third in the conference. All with a torn quad.
Blame It on My Youth
“Yeah, I just told my mom I had leg cramps, and used a lot of Icy Hot all season. I really hope it doesn’t happen this year.”
Come Rain or Come Shine
Although Jadon only competes in football and track, he continues to train everyday.
“I train year round,” Jadon said “I’m at the top of all the strength charts.”
“I work on a hog farm during the summer and on weekends. It’s been insightful. I wake up at 4:30 in the morning to shower in and shower out of the facility. I like to work with the little ones, the babies. But, they scream all day.”
Dig Down Deep
“I got stuck mentally last year, in the high jump. I’m six foot tall, and just thought I can’t jump over six foot. Coach Everett really built me up. I finally got over it. Everyone hits a wall like that. It’s all mental. You’ve got to work out of it.”
“That’s the beauty of track,” Jadon said. “It just tests raw talent. Sometimes, you either have it or you don’t. No amount of practice will help. But in other sports, there are strategies and they evolve. Track is just talent and I think that is beautiful.”
Young at Heart
“I’m out there to have a good time. Enjoy it while you got it. I run around at track meets just talking to everybody.”
I Get a Kick Out of You/Thanks For the Memory
“I miss David [Thompson]. He would bring his cowboy boots to track meets and just clomp around after his races,” Jadon laughed. “He was energetic and funny. We really pushed each other in workouts.”
All the Way
Jadon has already signed to play football for Simpson College in the fall, as well as run track in the spring.
“I will be majoring in computer science,” Jahnke said. “I will be a running back in football, and we’ve been talking about the long jump, and maybe sprints for track. I’m looking forward to it.”

The Good Life for Jadon, It Happens Every Spring, and Spring is Here. Sunday, Monday, or Always, Jadon is training. He Gives the Best of Everything and knows The Best is Yet to Come. Day By Day, Day In or Day Out, it’s All or Nothing at All for Jadon Jahnke.