APRIL 2, 1996

TILLERY - Balloons launched into the sky at a four year old's birthday party in New Castle, Indiana floated hundreds of miles southeast landing at the state prison farm at Caledonia Correctional Institution.

Driving a visitor around the farm's row crop area, farm foreman Billy Johnson spotted the brightly colored balloons tangled in a tree. A paper dangling from the balloons caught his eye. He retrieved the balloons and pulled the paper and a postcard from a clear plastic bag.

The paper explained the balloons were released January 29 during a birthday party for Cody Denny and asked the post card be returned by the person that found the balloons.

"I know when that little fellow turned it loose, he didn't expect to hear anything," Johnson said. But the farm foreman noted where the balloons were found, signed his name and mailed the post card back to the Dennys.

Johnson recently received a letter from the family with a newspaper article attached and a photograph of a bright eyed, happy Cody.

"He looked like he was tickled," said Johnson. "All I did was pick up the balloons and drop the post card in the mail."

Johnson's thoughtful act meant a lot to Cody and his parents. In a thank you letter, the family wrote Johnson's response and the balloons flight were reported in the local news making Cody a "star for another day."

"I hope you get as big a kick out of this as we all did," they wrote. "Thanks again."