Mormon missionaries robbed in Russia

Published: Sunday, Feb. 16 2014 9:45 p.m. MST

The Calls are accustomed to having missionaries overseas. Kamron Call is the 9th of their 12 children and the eighth to serve a mission. All have served outside the United States. Kamron Call is in Russia and an older brother is in Mexico. The other six children served in Australia (two), Korea, Bulgaria, Norway and England.

Russ Call served a mission in Spain.

"My kids have been all over the world, and they've loved serving missions," he said. "They've been treated well everywhere they've gone."

Kamron Call was born in Arizona but moved with his family to Utah at an early age. He graduated salutatorian at Grand County High School in Moab.

Jeffrey Owen is one of six children of Steve and Leslie Owen. Two older brothers have served LDS missions, one in Bolivia and the other in Salt Lake City. Owen graduated from NewTech High School in Coppell, Texas, and studied for a year at Texas A&M before entering the mission field.

Engels is a "suburb of Saratov," Leslie Owen said, and the Facebook item posted by Call's brother said Call and Boyer were living in the same apartment once lived in by Travis Tuttle and Andrew Propst, who were kidnapped while serving an LDS mission in Saratov, Russia, in 1998. Russ Call said the family isn't certain the apartment is the same, though the Calls and the Owens said they know it is in the same area.

Tuttle and Propst were held for ransom, but the perpetrators eventually released them without incident. Those assailants were captured and imprisoned. "The Saratov Approach," a movie about the incident, was released last year.

Russ Call said there is no indication Saturday's robbery had any connection to the movie or to the Sochi Olympics happening nearly 900 miles away.

The missionaries "are basically on lockdown now," Leslie Owen said. "They're not to leave their apartment until this man is captured." She assumed her son is staying in Engels with Harrison, Call and Boyer.

Kamron Call continues to feel safe in Russia, his father said, "safer than he would in a lot of places in the States."

"My son says (incidents like Saturday) never happen," Russ Call said. "It was an exciting experience, but it turned out well, as it usually does for most missionaries."

Email: twalch@deseretnews.com

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