Decades ago, the only way to communicate with loved ones back home was through letters. Hand written notes of love, sadness and longing have made their way from the battlefield back home over the years. There were times when loved ones wouldn’t hear from their service member for weeks or even months. But technology has helped eliminate the long periods of silence, and changed the way military families deal with deployment.

“As technology has evolved – so has the USO’s use of that technology to fulfill our mission,” says Valerie Donegan, USO Director of Information Technology. Developing private satellite communications system over the past few years is just one of the ways we’ve helped troops connect to their friends and family. Recently, one of the system’s most popular uses is connecting deployed troops in Afghanistan to the births of their children via Skype. Read more about these heartwarming stories (and have some tissues ready!) at -Vyque White, USO Director of New Media