Hawaii Second Graders Donated Cell Phones For Soldiers

HONOLULU (KHNL) -- Eight hundred hours of talk time. That's what one Army unit in Iraq will get thanks to a group of Hawaii second graders.

Carson Risdon's Dad is in Iraq, and everytime the phone rings he hopes it will be his father on the other end.

"I just like my dad calling, it's really fun I don't get to talk to him much because theres a web cam thing that won't work," Risdon said.

The stories he told his classmates inspired their service project.

"Sometimes I ask him how it is in Iraq and we talk about it and stuff," Risdon says. "He tells me he loves me and he hopes I'm having a good time in Hawaii."

During February and March, his second grade class at Holy Family Catholic Academy collected 60 cell phones for the non-profit group, Cell Phones for Soldiers. Its founders Massachusetts teens Robbie and Brittany Berquist started the group and they're in Hawaii now on vacation. It takes old cell phones, recycles them for cash, and buys calling cards.

"One of the things they really look forward to is being able to speak to their loved ones back here both the ones here in Hawaii and on the mainland. So receiving something like this just definitely boosts their morale," said Captain Andrew Hogue.

Today, the Berquists donated 800 sixty-minute phone cards to Major Robert Risdon's unit.

"Tremendous thanks on behalf of the 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team to both the second grade class here and Cell Phones for Soldiers for doing what they've donating these cards to us and just helping out our soldiers," Hogue said.

They also help keep kids like Carson in touch with their heros.