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November 11, 2011 05:17 PM

Veteran Skypes From Kuwait With Students

chester, sd


With the help of two video cameras, the internet and a late night for one veteran, several hundred students got a first-hand look at what it's like to serve in the military.

Honoring America's military is a long-standing tradition for Chester Area School. On Friday, they used modern technology to personalize Veterans Day.

District employee Allie Crittenden's husband, Jason, is serving in Kuwait and spoke to the students via Skype.

"It was hard, very hard," Allie said. "It's easy to do it at home when it's just me and him, but in front of other people, it's hard."

Using cameras and the internet, Jason explained to students why he joined the military when he was a junior in high school.

"I wanted to be part of the American military, the best fighting force in the world, and just do my part for the country," Jason said.

Jason is part of the security force as American troops leave Iraq. Friday's digital conversation was part of a grand assembly honoring 25 veterans.

"I don't think people realize what veterans do and what they did," Allie said. "I think you know they are fighting for our country, but you don't know exactly what they're doing."

Jason served in the military for ten years and he is able to answer dozens of questions from students about what it's like serving in Kuwait.

"It's hard to prepare for combat," Jason said. "You can't really simulate or train for it; you just have to get there and experience it."

"It was kind of cool talking to him because he's in a different country and we're right here, right now," fifth-grade student Bayden Schneider said.

"It's really nice and it meant a lot," sixth-grade student Kristen Neumann said.

Jason is scheduled to come home for a two week leave next Friday. His wife is hoping he'll be home for good in May.
  • Chester, SD
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