U.S. soldiers in Iraq received some thoughtful gifts from staff and clients of Devereux Whitlock this year, especially PA Boy Scout Troop 387, and sent back a keepsake from the Middle East in return.

Devereux Whitlock, located in Berwyn, specializes in services for adults with mental disabilities and/or mental health disorders. Donna Dewbrew, whose son Specialist Steve Dewbrew has been stationed in Iraq since November of 2006, started working in Devereux's human resources department in July. Her co-workers decided that Spc. Dewbrew and the rest of his company could use some stuff from back home, and so they enlisted the help of troop 387, adult Boy Scouts who are clients at Devereux.

The boy scouts collected hygiene supplies, candy, cookies, books, magazines and more, and sent a package over to Mosul, Iraq late last summer. About a month ago they received something from the Middle East, an Operation Iraqi Freedom flag signed by the members of D company, 4th Battalion, 1st Cavalry.

"It really touched my heart," said Donna Dewbrew. "These people here at Devereux, they just picked up the ball and ran with it . . . It's a really good feeling". Dewbrew said Steve is due home between Dec. 24 and Jan. 4. Troop 387 just sent another, more Christmas-themed care package to Mosul earlier this month.

   Will Hobson