SUN VALLEY -- Two flags -- one American, the other yellow -- flew Friday outside the home of the wife of a 21-year-old Nevada man missing from the fighting in Iraq.
Lance Cpl. Donald J. Cline Jr. and seven other Marines have been missing since Sunday after fighting on the outskirts of Nasiriyah, the Pentagon said Thursday. Four more were reported missing Friday.
His wife, Tina Cline, 20, said three Marines and a chaplain told her Wednesday that her husband couldn't be located.
"All they could tell me was that he was missing," she told The Associated Press on Friday. "They don't know if he was captured or injured or hurt or killed. They say they lost contact with him -- that he could have gone into hiding or gotten lost in a sandstorm."
She told KTVN-TV in Reno on Thursday she was encouraged because three of his squadron members had been found alive.
"I never prayed so hard that my knuckles turned purple," she said.
Tina Cline said she and her two sons, Dakota, 2Y, and Dylan, 7 months, are living with her mother in Sun Valley, north of Reno.
"I just look at my kids and I have to have hope," she said Friday. "He is too young and has too many people that love him.
"I'm worried that if I get too optimistic I might be setting myself up for too big a fall. But I feel it so deeply inside my heart. I wish people could see inside my heart to see how optimistic I am."
She said her oldest son received a hand-carved Dodge Dakota truck on Thursday that Cline had made out of Kuwaiti wood. It was postmarked March 14.
She said she has busied herself making buttons with Cline's photograph on them and attaching them to yellow ribbons.
The couple attended Reed High School in Sparks, and she gave him a ride to the recruiting station when he enlisted with the Marines.
"He always said he wanted to be a Marine. His whole senior year he was already signed up and ready."
Cline left for boot camp two weeks after finishing high school. He was graduated from Marine boot camp on Oct. 20, 2000, and they were married the next day at the American Legion hall in Sun Valley.
A small American flag is by the front door of the three-bedroom modular home in Sun Valley.
A larger 18-inch by 4-foot American flag flies in front of the home and a 4-foot yellow flag fluttered in the yard with black lettering saying, "We Support Our Troops," "War on Terrorism" and "Come Home Soon."
Cline and all but one of the other seven missing Marines are assigned to the 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment of the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade based at Camp Lejeune, N.C.