James Foley Tricked Captors to Send Family a Last Letter

He had fellow hostage memorize it, recite it to his mom
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 25, 2014 2:46 PM CDT
James Foley Tricked Captors to Send Family a Last Letter
Candles are lighted on the town common during a vigil for James Foley in his hometown of Rochester, NH, Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014.   (AP Photo/Jim Cole)

In captivity, it was impossible for James Foley to get letters home past guards. So he came up with a way to get a final message to his family anyway—through the mouth of another prisoner, Vanity Fair reports. Foley dictated the letter to fellow hostage and photojournalist Daniel Rye Ottosen, according to the Daily Mail. Ottosen memorized the letter and, when he was released, called Foley's mother to give her the message, addressed to "family and friends." "I have had weak and strong days," Foley wrote. "We are so grateful when anyone is freed; but of course, yearn for our own freedom."

"I remember so many great family times that take me away from this prison. Dreams of family and friends take me away and happiness fills my heart," Foley writes, via the Washington Post. He describes how the prisoners kept busy with invented games, "endless long conversations about movies, trivia, sports," and "teaching each other." He offers messages to many individual family members, calling for "any money left in my bank account" to go to them and asking his grandmother to "take your medicine, take walks, and keep dancing ... Stay strong because I am going to need your help to reclaim my life." Foley's full letter is on Facebook. (More James Foley stories.)

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