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frequently asked questions

Cody shows off one of his piercings

I am one of many viewers who would like to help Cody. What can I do?

Donations for Cody Perkins may be sent to 61 Harmony Lane, Prestonsburg, KY 41653. Please make the check payable to Liz McGuire and add "gift for Cody Perkins" on the memo line. All monies will be deposited into an investment account with Edward Jones Investments for use in Cody's educational endeavors. Please email drsutherland@earthlink.net with any questions or concerns.

How did Cody become a student at the David School?

Within a year or so following his father's death, when Cody was 12 years old, he began floundering at his public high school. His step-grandmother, Liz, had heard good things about the David School, and she began encouraging Cody to transfer. After some initial resistance, Cody agreed.

Did Cody receive any medical treatment for the depression he describes feeling after his father's death?

He was seeing a therapist after his father's suicide, but by his own account he didn't feel it was helping.

When did Cody become a Christian?

Cody was born again when he was 14, just before he began high school and roughly a year before filming for "Country Boys" began.

Cody and Jessica Riddle, who married in April 2004

Are Cody and Jessica still together?

Yes. Jessica and Cody were married on April 10, 2004. Pastor Bill Stukenberg, Cody's religious mentor, who had left Kentucky to work at a church in Wisconsin, returned to officiate at their wedding.

Is Cody's band, Seven Rise Up still together?

Yes. They are still playing and recording music together.

Since graduating from high school, what has Cody been doing to support himself?

He has held several food service jobs, including working as manager of a pizza shop while pursuing a vocational degree to become a heating and cooling repairman. He just recently earned his apprentice's license.

Does Cody plan to go to college?

He has decided to pursue a vocational degree to become a heating and cooling technician mainly because of the work flexibility that he'll have as a repairman. He hopes to have a schedule that allows him to tour with his band while also having a trade he can practice anywhere in order to support himself and Jessica. He's thought about going back to school to learn more about music production.

Liz McGuire, Cody's step-grandmother

Does Cody keep in touch with Liz?

Cody and Jessica see her regularly because they now live next door to Liz in the trailer park she owns.

How does Liz earn a living?

Liz owns the trailer park and also runs a hair salon out of her home. She'd like to retire from her hair styling business, but her devoted clientele are doing their best to keep her busy. Before the salon, she worked at a mortician's office, drove a tractor, and helped out on her father's farm.

Does Liz have children of her own? Was there anyone else living with her and Cody?

Liz has four grown children of her own: three daughters and a son. She is estranged from her husband, although he was still living in her home during the filming of "Country Boys." In addition to her biological children, Liz has taken in and raised six additional kids, including Cody.

Was there ever a final accounting of the inheritance money that was due Cody? Was Liz, his unofficial guardian, getting any support for Cody?

Cody did get an accounting of the money. As is shown in Part Three of the series, he took Liz's advice and decided to invest it. Liz received no financial compensation from the government or from any other source.

Did Jessica become a Christian because of Cody?

No. Like Cody, Jessica was born again just before she started high school. At that time, she hadn't yet met Cody. Although Jess and Cody didn't become Christians together, they feel their shared faith has become an important part of their relationship.

Where did Jessica and Cody meet?

They went to the same high school, but then Cody moved to the David School. They met again, and began dating.

Did Jessica go to the community college that they visit in the film?

She did. As an undergraduate, Jessica studied Human Services and Counseling and has started a master's degree in psychology. Some day, she would like to have her own practice as a youth counselor.

Does Jessica have a job now?

She is now in school, full-time, working towards a master's degree in psychology, but she is also earning money on the side by working at the local bank.

Ray and Tammy Riddle, Jessica's parents

How does Ray Riddle earn a living? Does his wife Tammy work?

Until becoming unable to work in recent years due to health problems, Ray was a mining technician, inspecting machinery at regional mining facilities. Tammy works as a nurse.

Do Ray and Tammy share in Jessica and Cody's faith?

Both Ray and Tammy consider themselves very religious people.

Is that a real recording studio in Ray and Tammy's house? Why is it there?

Ray is a serious musician. In order to pursue his interest in music, he studied how to build a music studio and built one in his home. He uses the space to record songs such as those heard in the soundtrack to this film.

Watch the Music Video of "Country Boys" with Ray Riddle singing one of his songs HIGH | LOW

What were the health problems Ray was struggling with during the filming?

He suffers from a seizure disorder.

Ray in his home recording studio

What is Ray doing now?

Because of his ongoing health problems, he no longer can work, but he's still pursuing singing and songwriting.

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posted jan. 9, 2006

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