Name: Lem Jeffries Rank/Branch: Private/US Army Unit: 9th Engineer Battalion, 7th Army Corps Age: 32 Home City: Date of Loss: 06 March 1991 Country of Loss: Loss Coordinates: Status: Released POW 03/06/91 Acft/Vehicle/Ground:
Other Personnel in Incident: unknown
Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 09 March 1991 from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, published sources, interviews. Updated 2002 POW NETWORK.
REMARKS: OPERATION DESERT STORM
SYNOPSIS: During the weeks of the Persian Gulf War, several dozen American and Coalition military personnel were captured by the Iraqis or declared Missing in Action. Information was scarce and hard to find relating to these individuals. In most cases, those who were missing were at least identified by name, age and branch of service.
In early March, 21 Americans were released by the Iraqis. Nine of these were acknowledged to be POWs by the U.S. Government prior to their release. At least one had been declared Killed in Action. Two were reported missing in non-hostile environments. Some were a complete surprise to everyone, including the U.S. Government.
Two of these surprises came from the same unit - the 9th Engineer Battalion, 7th Army Corps, based in Germany. Pvt. Lem Jeffries and 1Lt. Kevin Rise, both of the 9th Engineer Battalion, were released on March 6, 1991 with 40 international journalists. According to media sources, the two were released after Iraq had stated all military POWs had been released.
According to the Army, the Engineer Battalions were widely spread across the desert and it was not uncommon for individuals to become temporarily "misplaced" - believed by one unit to be with the other. This, apparently was the case with Jeffries and Rise.
In spite of their brief captivity, Rice and Jeffries are now listed among those captured by the Iraqis during the Persian Gulf War.
Some observers wonder how many others have been "misplaced."