Small town graduates find each other in Afghanistan PDF Print E-mail
Written by Spc. Mary L. Gonzalez CJTF-101 Public Affairs   
Thursday, 01 January 2009

081220_A_7103G_001.jpgBAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan (December 20, 2008) – Four graduates of Ohio County High School in Beaver Dam, Ky., had an unlikely reunion at Bagram, Afghanistan.

Staff Sgt. Jason B. Cundiff, Master Sgt. Allen W. Kessinger, Staff Sgt. April D. Cogdill (formerly April D. Wade) and Spc. Sybil D. Austin graduated from the same high school over the span of about 14 years. Now they all serve in the same unit, Combined Joint Task Force-101.

One day, Cundiff and Kessinger were talking and discovered that they were both from the same high school, said Cundiff, a human resource specialist with CJTF-101, who graduated in 1991 and enlisted in March 1992

“[Kessinger] says he doesn’t remember me, but I think I may have beat him up a few times,” joked Cundiff, 36, who says he earned the nickname “Moose” in high school.

Kessinger, 38, later discovered that one of the legal specialists down the hall named Cogdill, 29, was also a former fellow student, and that she had bumped into an admin specialist, Austin, 22, at the dining facility and found out that she too had something in common.

"I thought it remarkable that four Soldiers from one small-town high school would be serving together ... deployed to Afghanistan in support of the global war on terror,” said Kessinger, who is with the military police.  “I think it's a testament to the patriotism and sacrifice of small-town communities all over our great country, particularly Ohio County, Kentucky. We all consider it a great honor to represent the good people of Ohio County; we are very proud of where we come from, and hope that our story may inspire more young men and women to serve.”

Beaver Dam, Ohio County, is about 60 miles northeast of Fort Campbell, Ky., where they are all stationed.

 

 
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