Video Connects Soldiers to Their Loved Ones Back Home
Range Telephone and Vision Net partner with Freedom Calls Foundation to allow families to hear and see each other across great divides - All at no charge.
Imagine participating in the birth of your child - from a distance of nearly 8000 miles. What about saying "I do" to your new spouse while stationed a continent away? And what about all those other milestones - birthdays, anniversaries or a child's first straight-A report card - that happen while our service people are deployed overseas?
Range Telephone Cooperative in conjunction with Montana-based Vision Net (in which Range has ownership stake), is providing a means for servicemen and women to participate in such events - at no charge - through their videoconferencing services. The video calls, which allow families to connect face-to-face in real time, are part of a larger, national effort known as Freedom Calls.
With the tagline "Deploying state-of-the-art technology to keep our troops in Iraq in touch with their families", the Freedom Calls Foundation is a nonprofit organization created by John B. Harlow II and Edward Bukstel and supported by private and corporate donations.
Range and subsidiaries RT Communications, Dubois Telephone Exchange and Advanced Communications Technology (ACT) are taking the lead in their Montana and Wyoming service areas by opening their vdeoconferencing facilities to military families. Offices in Forsyth, Sheridan, Worland, Newcastle, Pine Bluffs and Dubois are part of the Freedom Calls network. Military families interested in arranging a Freedom Call may simply contact Range, RT, DTE, ACT or Vision Net to begin the process.
"We were excited and honored to learn of the Freedom Calls Program and to have the opportunity to get involved. Our participation certainly doesn't compare to the sacrifices our service men and women have made, but at least this is something that may help them and their families feel a little closer while they're apart," said Range CEO and General Manager, Rob Stephens.
Families interested in Freedom Calls may contact their local telephone office or Vision Net at 1-877-449-8638. More Information on Freedom Calls may be found at www.vision.net or www.freedomcalls.org.
Congratulations to the 2016 Youth Tour winner Kelly Seleg.
2017 H.S. Juniors enter today, win an all expense paid trip to Washington D.C.
Range Telephone Cooperative, Inc., in conjunction with the Foundation for Rural Service, is once again sponsoring an essay contest for high school juniors to win what has been referred to as a "trip of a lifetime".
One high school junior will be selected to receive an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. to participate in the Foundation for Rural Service Youth Tour, June 3 - June 7, 2017. He/she will be joined by over 100 other high school juniors from across the United States.
To enter the contest, students must write an essay on the following topic, “How important do you think access to high speed internet will be for your community and personal use in the next 5 years?” The essay should be typed, double-spaced, and no less than 400 words in length. Essay entries must be postmarked no later than March 17th, and submitted to: Range Telephone, Attn: General Manager, P. O. Box 127, Forsyth, MT 59327. Winners will be notified shortly thereafter.
To qualify, students, or their parents:
- Must receive their local phone service from Range and reside in one of the following exchanges - (In Montana -- 342, 346, 347, 356, 421, 427, 436, 477, 554, 592, 757, 784, 828, 984 or in Wyoming -- 283, 736, 737, 750, 758, 878)
- Must be a high school junior.
- Must have parental authorization.
Students attending the Youth Tour will gain a first-hand look at the telecommunications industry and receive education on government processes. Students will also have an opportunity to visit famous historical sites including the Washington Monument, the Smithsonian Institution, the National Cathedral, the U.S. Capitol and Arlington National Cemetery. For more information and photos, please visit the Foundation for Rural Service website at www.frs.org
Congratulations to the 2016 Scholarship Winners!
In 2017, Range Telephone Cooperative, Inc. will award twenty scholarships valued at $2,500 each, increased by $500 each. One of the twenty scholarships will be earmarked as the Louis Capra Memorial Scholarship in memory of a former board member. This scholarship will be awarded to a student from the Ashland or Broadus area. One of the twenty scholarships will be earmarked as the Ron Bixby Memorial Scholarship in memory of a former employee. This award will go to a student who is a tribal enrolled member.
Applications are available from (a) your local high school counselor, (b) by calling Range Telephone at 406-347-2226 or 800-927-2643, or (c) by downloading the Range Scholarship Application and corresponding Financial Statement.
The applicant must have a GPA of at least 3.0.
The applicant must be a resident of either Montana or Wyoming.
The applicant must be a dependent (son or daughter) of a current member of Range Telephone (with local phone service), or a dependent of a current employee of Range. The telephone exchanges served by Range Telephone are:
- Hysham - 342
- Forsyth - 346 or 356
- Rosebud - 347
- So. Miles City - 421
- So. Broadus - 427
- Alzada - 828
- Birney - 984
- No. Broadus - 554
- Busby - 592
- Decker - 757
- Ashland - 784
- Broadus - 436
- Lame Deer - 477
- Sundance - 283
- Arvada - 736
- SE Sheridan - 737
- Decker - 750
- Clearmont - 758
- Alzada - 878
The applicant must be a graduating high school senior entering his/her first year of college or trade school. Past winners are not eligible to apply.
The applicant must complete an application and a personal letter of application. The personal letter must include at least one paragraph dealing with (a) academic achievements, (b) community involvement and (c) educational goals. The applicant must also complete a financial statement (link above) indicating their financial need. At least one current letter of recommendation, but no more than three, may accompany the scholarship application. Please include a copy of your most recent school transcript (the transcript should contain the school’s grading scale).
Incomplete applications will not be returned for completion and will be immediately disqualified. In addition, applications received or postmarked after the deadline shall also be disqualified.
Applications must be submitted to Range Telephone Cooperative, Inc., Attn: Scholarship Committee, P. O. Box 127, Forsyth, MT 59327 and postmarked by no later than March 10th, 2017.
High schools will be notified of the winners and they will be announced at the respective graduation/award ceremonies.
Other Scholarship Programs