'Missing' Marine's Effects Found

Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun at Quantico, Va. in 2004. AP

U.S. troops have recovered belongings of a U.S. Marine who was once feared beheaded by Iraqi insurgents after disappearing from his unit, U.S. officials said.

The personal effects of Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun were found last week in a box on the third floor of a three-story commercial building in Fallujah, the officials said. The property included an identification card, a uniform and a book.

Hassoun, of West Jordan, Utah, disappeared from his base near Fallujah in June and later turned up at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon. It remains unclear how he traveled from Iraq to Lebanon, where he has relatives.

On June 27, Arab television showed a videotape of a blindfolded Hassoun, a sword hanging over his head. At one point while he was missing, a group claiming to represent his captors announced that he had been beheaded after being lured from the base by a love affair.

Hassoun returned in July to the Marine base at Camp Lejeune, N.C. In September, medical authorities at Camp Lejeune declared him fit for full duty, allowing him to return to the brigade motor pool where he worked before he deployed to Iraq in February.
  • Jaime Holguin

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