James Foley's Last Letter Home: I Pray for You All to Be Strong

Having all his letters confiscated by his captors, journalist dictated letter to fellow hostage who was later released before his own beheading.

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Journalist James Foley covering the civil war in Aleppo, Syria, in 2012.
Journalist James Foley covering the civil war in Aleppo, Syria, in 2012.Credit: AP

The parents of James Foley, the journalist beheaded by radical Islamists earlier this month, have released a letter from their son verbally dictated to a fellow captive who was later released.

His parents released the letter on their Find James Foley Facebook page.

According to his parents, Foley's jailers confiscated all the letters that he wrote to his family during captivity. However, a fellow hostage agreed to commit a letter by him to memory shortly before his release.

"I know you are thinking of me and praying for me. And I am so thankful," the letter read. "I feel you all especially when I pray. I pray for you to stay strong and to believe."

Foley spoke of family memories and described his captivity and how the hostages tried to keep their spirits up.

"Eighteen of us have been held together in one cell, which has helped me. We have had each other to have endless long conversations about movies, trivia, sports," Foley stated in his oral letter. "We have played games made up of scraps found in our cell…we have found ways to play checkers, Chess, and Risk… and have had tournaments of competition, spending some days preparing strategies for the next day’s game or lecture. The games and teaching each other have helped the time pass. They have been a huge help. We repeat stories and laugh to break the tension."

Foley admitted having weak days and strong days, taking comfort when fellow captives were freed while yearning for his own freedom.

He had a word for various members of his family, even imploring his grandmother to take her medicine, take walks, and "keep dancing."

He added: "I plan to take you out to Margarita’s when I get home. Stay strong because I am going to need your help to reclaim my life."

Foley was beheaded a week ago. The executioner in the video of his beheading, which was uploaded to the Internet, has been identified as Abdel-Majed Abdel Bary, a British-born rapper known as L Jinny. According to a Western intelligence official who spoke with Fox News, Bary's father, Adel Abdul Bary, is in jail in New York on suspicion of planning the deadly embassy bombings in Africa that killed over 200 people.

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