The bodies of two U.S. soldiers missing in Iraq for more than a year have been found, their families said Thursday. The military would not immediately confirm the report.
The father of Army Sgt. Alex Jimenez, of Lawrence, Mass., said the remains of his son and the remains of another soldier, Byron Fouty, of Waterford, Mich., had been identified in Iraq.
Jimenez's father, Ramon "Andy" Jimenez, told The Associated Press through a translator that the news "shattered all hope" the family had to "see Alex walk home on his own."
The soldiers' families, who had become friends over the past year, were notified about the same time and had been in touch. The Pentagon generally waits 24 hours after notifying the next of kin before making a release public.
Jimenez said uniformed military officials came to his home Thursday to tell him the body of his son and some of his son's personal effects had been discovered. Fouty's stepfather, Gordan Dibler, said military officials also came to his home to break the news.
Jimenez, 25, and Fouty, 19, were kidnapped along with a third member of the 2nd Brigade of the 10th Mountain Division during an ambush in May 2007. Several other soldiers died, and the body of the third kidnapped soldier, Pfc. Joseph Anzack Jr. of Torrance, Calif., was found in the Euphrates River months ago.
The Jimenez family was expected to receive Alex Jimenez's body in five days.