Two Idaho Brothers Reunited By War


Two Idaho brothers had an unexpected reunion with war as a backdrop.

This morning's Coeur d'Alene Press chronicles how Army 1st Lt. Kyle Payne and Army Spec. Brett Payne, both University of Idaho graduates, met up in the Kandahar Province of southern Afghanistan.

"The odds are pretty crazy," Kyle told the Press. "We started in completely different units that are stationed on opposite sides of the United States."

The 25-year-old Kyle is attached to a Washington brigade; 23-year-old Brett's brigade is based in North Carolina.

"He didn't know I was coming until just before we arrived," Kyle said. "We pulled through the gate at his combat outpost, and I jumped out of our Stryker to find him waiting for me. The guys standing around couldn't believe it."

It was the first time the brothers had seen one another in more than a year.

"It was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience and one neither of us will ever forget," Brett said. "It's pretty strange to say I've had dinner with my brother in Afghanistan, and I'm proud to have been able to share that experience with him."