Seventh and eighth grade students at High Point R-III had the unique opportunity to videoconference via Skype with soldiers currently stationed in Balad, Iraq. Students each asked a question for Capt. Seth Everett, Spec. Chris Herriman, Sgt. Thomas Hall and Sgt. Cody Conner. The idea came from High Point teacher Amanda Herriman who is teaching the seventh and eighth grade students about communicating with technology. Herriman is Spec. Herriman's sister and said talking with the soldiers allows the students to see they are real people with families, just like anyone else. She added the students were able to encourage the troops and ask them questions about life in the military or living in a desert.
Capt. Everett is a California High School graduate and is married to Kristen (Scheidt). He currently lives in St. Louis and works for the St. Louis County Police Department. He said while deployed he is assigned as the commander of a flight operations detachment and primarily perform the functions of a Battle Captain. His duties are to plan and manage fixed wing missions which move troops and cargo in direct support of the United States Forces - Iraq Commanding General. Their detachment provides flight operations support to C-23, C-12 and UC-35 aircraft. In addition to those duties he is also a C-23 pilot and one or two times a week he flies missions.
"It is nice to have family and friends send care packages and see they care," Capt. Everett said. "They provide comforts from home and make it easier over here which helps you from missing your family quite as much."
Capt. Everett added he appreciated the questions and encouragement they received from the students at High Point.
Spec. Herriman is an Aviations Ops Specialist in the Missouri National Guard. He helps assist in all aspects of the daily operations and has volunteered for several extra duties including unit mail clerk and centralized aviation flight records system administrator. He helps assist the aviators in their flight planning. He has a fiancÃ©e, Anne Rogers, and they have a Shih Tzu named "Frank." Spec. Herriman is currently pursuing a Bachelor's in Management from the University of Phoenix. His parents are Jim and Clare. "Frank's" brother "Ben" lives with his parents.
"At this time," Herriman said, "no future media plans are scheduled until we see how this project turns out. On behalf of the class we would like to show our appreciation for everybody who has served in the military and especially those who have spent holidays away from their families like these soldiers are going to be doing. These soldiers have currently served for seven months and will be returning in late spring of 2011."