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Software lets soldier in Afghanistan see daughter's birth in Missouri

Wednesday, July 28, 2010 | 7:42 a.m. CDT; updated 6:46 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Laurie Cooper and her newborn daughter, Charlotte Rose, talk to Cooper's husband, U.S. Army Capt. David Cooper, via video conferencing. David Cooper is in Afghanistan for his second deployment in a war zone. Computer software allowed him to attend his daughter's birth on July 19 in Hannibal. Laurie Cooper returned to Hannibal from Germany a few weeks ago so she could stay with her parents.

HANNIBAL — Army Capt. David Cooper was in Afghanistan when his daughter was born in Missouri. But thanks to technology, he was able to not only witness the birth but help coach his wife through labor.

Video conferencing software allowed Cooper to be laptop-to-face with his wife, Laurie, through the birth of Charlotte Rose on July 19 at Hannibal Regional Hospital.

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Not that it was easy. The couple used Skype, a software application that allows for video conferencing. Throughout much of the day, they had trouble connecting. Thankfully, the software worked perfectly for the final two hours before the girl was born.

Laurie says she and hospital staff were able to see the sun come up in Afghanistan as the baby was being born just after dusk in Missouri.

For more on this story, including pictures, see the Quincy Herald-Whig.


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