Special Reports

Brent’s in Iraq. Jaime’s in Caldwell.

Sgt. Brent DeVall woke up Saturday morning and got ready for work: He put on his desert camouflage and his combat boots. He strapped on body armor, ammo and night-vision goggles. He slung his M-4 carbine over his shoulder and set out to patrol Kirkuk, Iraq.

For Jaime DeVall, the morning began as most days do: dragging 4-year-old Tyler out of bed and heading to Burger King at Overland and Cole for breakfast with her mom.

Jaime packed Tyler into their gray sedan, which is covered in military magnets and bumper stickers. One reads: “Half my heart is in Iraq!”Living 7,000 miles and 10 time zones apart, Jaime and Brent DeVall’s days revolve around their daily chances to instant-message over the Internet or talk on the phone.

Jaime and Brent connected on Saturday. “He’s like my second wind,” Jaime said. “That cell phone is my connection to him.”