Americans Missing in Iraq

LAST UPDATED: December 21, 2013

It's rather astonishing that at least 20 Americans are still missing in Iraq and yet, we seldom hear about the missing in the major news media.

Additions/corrections are welcome, please email me at susie.dow at gmail.com

Below is a chart showing the name, incident date, and status of those Americans known to be missing and/or held hostage in Iraq in table format. The chart shows 47 Americans: an estimated 20 Americans are still believed missing of whom the names of 9 are unknown. An additional 2 American's names are known but the date of incident is not.

Text of available SIGACT reports are posted at SIGACT Reports of Americans Missing in Iraq.

Americans Missing in Iraq - as of December 21, 2013

Names missing from the chart below: Haqi al-Shemary and Hussain al-Zurufi.

Date
Name - incident report
Status
1
Oct 9, 2003
Kirk von Ackermann
missing
1
2
Apr 5, 2004
unknown female #1*
missing
2
3
Apr 8, 2004
Orly Halperin
released
4
Apr 9, 2004
Thomas Hamill 
escaped
5
Apr 9, 2004
Nicholas Evan Berg
deceased
6
Apr 9, 2004
William Bradley
deceased
7
Apr 9, 2004
Pfc Keith Matthew Maupin
deceased
8
Apr 9, 2004
Timothy E Bell
missing
3
9
May 3, 2004
Aban Elias
missing
4
10
Aug 13, 2004
Micah Garen
released
11
Sept 16, 2004
Jack Henlsey
deceased
12
Sept 16, 2004
Olin Eugene Armstrong Jr
deceased
13
Oct 10, 2004
Paul Taggart
released
14
Nov 1, 2004
Roy Hallums
released
15
Nov 2, 2004
Dean Sadek
missing
5
16
Nov 6, 2004
Bob Hamza (Hamze, Hamzy)
missing
6
17
Apr 11, 2005
Jeffrey Ake
missing
7
18
May 17, 2005
Neenus Y. Khoshaba
missing
8
19
Aug 2, 2005
Steven Charles Vincent
deceased
20
Sept 27, 2005
Abbas Kareem Naama (Tim)
missing
9
21
Nov 25, 2005
Ronald Alan Schulz 
deceased
22
Nov 26, 2005
Thomas William Fox
deceased
23
Dec 2, 2005
unknown #2
missing
10
24
Jan 7, 2006
Jill Carroll
released
25
Jun 16, 2006
Pfc Kristian Menchaca
deceased
26
Jun 16, 2006
Pfc Thomas Tucker
deceased
27
Oct 23, 2006
Sgt Ahmed Qusai al-Taayie
deceased

28
Nov 16, 2006
Jonathon Michael Cote
deceased
29
Nov 16, 2006
Paul Christopher Johnson-Reuben
deceased
30
Nov 16, 2006
Joshua Mark Munns
deceased
31
Nov 16, 2006
John Roy Young
deceased
32
Nov 27, 2006
Maj Troy Lee Gilbert (deceased)
missing
11
33
Jan 5, 2007
Ronald J Withrow
deceased
34
Jan 27, 2007
unknown #3
missing
12
35
Jan 27, 2007
unknown #4
missing
13
36
Feb 1, 2007
unknown Iraqi-American #5
missing
14
37
Mar 3, 2007
Adnan Al Hilawi
missing
15
38
Apr 25, 2007
unknown #6
missing
16
39
May 12, 2007
Sgt Alex Ramon Jimenez
deceased
40
May 12, 2007
Pfc Byron W Fouty
deceased
41
May 25, 2007
unknown #7
missing
17
42
Aug 17, 2007
unknown #8
missing
18
43
summer 2008
unknown #9
missing
19
44
May 21, 2009
Jim Kitterman
deceased
45
Oct 26, 2009
Kathryn Cory
missing
20
46
Jan 23, 2010
Issa T Salomi
released
47
June 18, 2011
Rand Michael Hultz
released

*based on WikiLeaks SIGACT report - needs verification. Worth noting, a British man, Gary Teeley, was abducted on April 5, 2004 in Nasiriyah and then released less than one week later on April 11, 2004.

Not included in the chart (at this time) are the troops taken POW (status: missing) during the invasion of March 2003. All were Returned to Military Control:
Spc. Edgar Hernandez
Spc. Joseph Hudson
Spc. Shoshana Johnson
Pfc. Patrick Miller
Sgt. James Riley
Pfc. Jessica Lynch
Chief warrant officer David Williams
Chief warrant officer Ronald Young Jr.
In 2012, an Army Times article stated that 58 Americans and 'foreign persons of interest' were declared missing or captured during the War. No further details were available.

US Navy pilot Capt. Michael Scott Speicher, shot down during Gulf War I, is also not included. Speicher's remains were recovered in August of 2009.

US Marine Corporal Wassef Ali Hassoun, accused by the US military of having deserted in Iraq on June 19, 2004, is also not included. Hassoun is believed to be hiding in Lebanon.

REVISIONS

December 21, 2013 - revised date of the disappearance of Bob Hamzy to November 6, 2004 based on information provided by a family member who wishes to remain anonymous. Hamza was last seen in Tikrit shortly after leaving FOB Danger.

June 23, 2013 - correction, added Neenus Y. Khoshaba, missing since May 17, 2005, his name was accidentally omitted during a previous update.

January 4, 2013 - added Kathryn Cory who was last heard from on October 26, 2009. Cory founded a small NGO that worked in Iraq with women and dairies. The only public information about Cory's disappearance comes from a single source, a close friend of Cory's. Status is unknown.

May 20, 2012 - added freelance journalist, Orly Halperin, kidnapped on April 8, 2004. Halperin was released the following day. (see: The Iraq Hostage Crisis: Abductions in Iraq, April-August 2004 PDF by Thomas Hegghammer)

April 11, 2012 - added Bob Hamza who disappeared near Tikrit on or near November 17-19, 2004

April 4, 2012 - corrections, addition of Haqi al-Shemary whose name appeared in a list of missing Americans that accompanied an article at Army Times

March 18, 2012 - addition of Rand Michael Hultz - released on March 17, 2012

February 26, 2012 - remains of Staff Sgt. Ahmed al-Taie recovered

January 21, 2012 - minor corrections in formatting

December 23, 2011 - Added Adnan al-Hilawi to table, kidnapped on March 3, 2007.  His name, along with von Ackermann, Bell, and Altaie, is posted on the DPMO website at the Iraq Theater and Other Conflicts page. The SIG-ACT report for the abduction of an 'American Iraqi' - now known to have been Adnan al-Hilawi - was included in a cache of information posted by WikiLeaks. See SIGACT Reports of Americans Missing in Iraq.

August 13, 2011 - Added Neenus Y. Khoshaba of Skokie, Illinois to table, kidnapped on May 17, 2005.

August 8, 2011 - two additional names of the missing revealed and an alternative spelling for Bob Hamza but incident dates remain unknown: Neenus Khoshaba, Hussain al-Zurufi, Bob Hamze. See Missing Men

January 23, 2011 - in all likelihood, the name 'Bob Hamza' should be included in the chart but the date of his abduction remains unknown. See Bob Hamza - missing

December 19, 2010 - corrected date of the abduction of Tom Fox to November 26, 2005

October 23, 2010 - (ongoing) adding links to the initial incident reports as I find them at WikiLeaks Iraq War Logs

October 14, 2010 - addition of the name of Abbas Kareem Naama (Tim Naama) who was kidnapped on the morning of September 27, 2005 in Baghdad, Iraq.

August 9, 2010 - based on National Counterterrorism Center data and statistics included in the annual Country Reports on Terrorism from the US Department of State

About the Data

Links to the initial incident reports have been culled from the WikiLeaks Iraq War Logs. Incident reports should more properly be referred to as 'SIGACT,' short for 'Significant Activity' or 'Significant Action.'
  • the data is based on news reports which often contradict each other
  • an article from April 2010 (US Operation aims to find missing) cites 11 missing Americans
  • a February 2010 article cites 17 missing (They search if someone's missing in Iraq) which conflicts with the current count of 18. Think positive, let's assume someone was released.
  • an article from October 2008 cites a total of 39 kidnapped Americans of which 22 are known to have been executed (Iraq calmer but copycat kidnappings spread). The chart above was started with 39 kidnapped Americans as a base line.
  • the data represents the minimum number of missing Americans. Companies and/or families may deliberately choose not report a hostage or kidnap victim to US government agencies. I was told by one representative of the Department of Labor that they were aware of unreported contractors missing in Iraq.
  • not all names of those missing - both past and present - are known and/or publicized for a number of reasons
  • Technically, the status of 'released' should more properly be referred to as 'Returned to Military Control' (RMC)

References

The Iraq Hostage Crisis: Abductions in Iraq, April-August 2004
By Thomas Hegghammer, Forsvarets Forskings Institutt, Norwegian Defense Research Establishment

Search for Iraq-born soldier still ongoing
By John Ryan, Army Times, December 27, 2011

With Withdrawal Looming, Trails Grow Cold for Americans Missing in Iraq
By Jack Healy, New York Times, May 21, 2011

Iraq War Logs
Alternative WikiLeaks mirror site
WikiLeaks, October 22, 2010

Data on Kidnappings from the State Department 
Summary of the findings of the reports for 2005 - 2009
August 8, 2010

Terrorism Deaths, Injuries, Kidnappings of Private U.S. Citizens, 2009
Country Reports on Terrorism 2009
US Department of State

Terrorism Deaths, Injuries, Kidnappings of Private U.S. Citizens
Country Reports on Terrorism 2007
US Department of State

Terrorism Deaths, Injuries, Kidnappings of Private U.S. Citizens
Country Reports on Terrorism 2006
US Department of State

Terrorism Deaths, Injuries, Kidnappings of Private U.S. Citizens
Country Reports on Terrorism 2005
US Department of State


Liberator II continues effort to find missing
By Sgt. 1st Class Roger Dey, April 20, 2010

US operation aims to find missing
By Sgt. 1st Class Roger Dey, 103rd Public Affairs Detachment, April 21, 2010

They search if someone’s missing in Iraq
By Scott Fontaine, The News Tribune, February 8, 2010

Officials confirm kidnapping of U.S. contractor in Iraq
By Ernesto LondoƱo and Leila Fadel, Washington Post, February 6, 2010

Iraq calmer but copycat kidnappings spread
By Pamela Hess, Associated Press, October 13, 2008