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Sunday, March 30, 2008

Missing No More

As regular visitors here will know, for quite a while now, there has been a post at the top of my blog, honoring missing Heroes. It's been temporarily removed while the "America's Most Inspirational Mom" voting is open.

In that post were the names of missing American and Israeli Heroes. One of the Americans in that post will no longer be on that list. It is an ending to this sad story that no doubt brings a fresh wave of grief for this Hero's loved ones.

Sgt. Keith Matthew "Matt" Maupin has been found.

He was captured April 9, 2004, when his fuel convoy was ambushed in Iraq. Al Jazeera later aired footage that showed him surrounded by now all-too-familiar black hooded thugs. A second tape purported to show his execution, but the footage was of poor quality and only showed the back of his head. No actual shooting was shown, and his family was left to wonder - and to hope.

The waiting is over for them, and I can only hope that they are able to find some small measure of peace in being able to bring him home.

Matt had a ten month old son when he was captured - a son who will never have the chance to know his father. At least he will know that his father was a Hero, and he will know what happened to him.

Tonight, Matt's family and friends mourn, Ohio mourns, and a nation waits for the return of this Fallen Hero.

For three other families of OIF Heroes, the wait for answers continues:

Pvt. Byron W. Fouty and Spc. Alex R. Jimenez have been missing since their military convoy was raided west of Mahmoudiya, Iraq, on May 12, 2007.

Spc. Ahmed K. Altaie disappeared October 23, 2006. Nearly two months after conflicting information painted a confusing picture of what might have happened, his status was changed to "missing-captured."

God Speed, Sgt. Maupin. We will never forget.



Yellow ribbons wave and flutter
while wind-laced rains
spit and stutter ~
those of us who kept you
close in prayer,
and those of us who
hoped you would come
home from there,
feel numb.

This dark night, I
have sent a prayer
heavenward for you ~
though I know you are
with angels
and your suffering is

I have said a prayer
for your family,
your sad father and
your grieving mother
You were everyone's
loved one,
everyone's son or brother.....

Rest easy, now
You're mission is over
You were one of the best.
Just rest, just rest.

Christina for Matt Maupin and his family 3/30/08
(posted by permission)


According to the Department of Defense's Prisoner of War / Missing Personnel office:

More than 74,000 Americans were never recovered following WWII.

More than 8,000 remain unaccounted for following the Korean War.

Well over 100 are unaccounted for following several incidents in the Cold War.

Vietnam saw nearly 2,000 Americans added to the list of those MIA.

Still missing from the 1991 Gulf War is Commander Michael Scott Speicher (USN)

Graphic by Doug Kidd

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