Wed like to offer our thanks to those from Skagway in the armed services. Some are stationed in the U.S. and others, overseas in far-flung places like Afghanistan and Iraq.
The Skagway Presbyterian Church has a roster of soldiers with Skagway connections: Rick Ackerman, Bill Amiotte, Samuel Beckett, Gretchen Eddy, Shaun Ferro, Benjamin Grooms, Jimmy Moore, Jake and Josh Sims, and Jamie Westfall.
We tried to contact the families of all of these soldiers, asking if they would like to have their addresses in the paper, or to submit a photo. Below are those who responded. Others requested, for security reasons, that their boys not be pictured, or their addresses released.
We wish all a safe tour and a speedy return. DL
(Clockwise from top) This photo of Jamie Westfall was taken in Skagway in June 2001. Hes now stationed on the USS Nimitz aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf. You can write to Jamie at UFA-94, Unit #25432, FPO AP 96601-6223 or e-mail him at email@example.com. Shaun William Feero (upper right) is with the Special Security Forces of the U.S. Air Force.
Senior Chief Michael Ackerman (right with glasses), is shown here with his brother, E-7 Staff Sergeant Rick Ackerman, who is an Army MP. Rick was in Kuwait, but was ordered to Iraq the week of April 7. Michael retired March 25 from the U.S. Naval Magazine Indian Island, Port Hadlock, Wash., after 23 years in the service. He will move to Pensacola , Florida, where he will study anesthesiology. He and his wife, Shelley, are expecting a girl in early June. Another view of Jim Moore on his Jeep. You can write him at: SSG James A. Moore, Unit 3-M, APO AE 0935 or he can receive e-mail on occasion at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And finally, Josh and Jake Sims, of whom the family wrote: Joshua Sims graduated from Skagway High in 1998; Service Rank, U.S. Navy Second Class Petty Officer; Length of Service, six years, and has completed four-and-a-half; Training, two years of nuclear engineer school; Job, nuclear engineer; Unit, stationed on the USS Enterprise; Home Base, Norfolk, Va.; Duty, Josh departed for sea duty four weeks after his son, Shane, was born. The USS Enterprise was on its way home after a six-month tour in the Mediterranean when 911 happened and the ship was deployed to the Persian Gulf for two more months so aircraft could bomb Afghanistan. Upon returning to Norfolk, the USS Enterprise went into dry dock and Josh refitted the reactors. Currently, The aircraft carrier is on standby to be deployed to Iraq if needed.
Jacob Sims graduated from Skagway High in 1999; Service Rank, U.S. Army Sergeant; Length of Service, four years, has completed three-and-a-half, recently reenlisted for three more years; Training, Sapper Leadership Course, currently training in Arizona on new mine detectors; Job, Airborne Combat Engineer; Unit, ACO 27th Engineer Battalion; Home Base, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Duty, Jake spent six months in Kosovo peace keeping. Jake enjoyed the children and learned a few words while overseas. Jake also worked in Louisiana, Georgia and Alabama. To maintain his airborne certification, Jake frequently has to practice parachuting from airplanes and helicopters (this is the kid who used to get airsick flying around Southeast). At this time, Jake is not sure where his next duty will be.