(1/22/2002) Prayer chains are very common on the 'net. Though many of them are actually based on real people and events, they are typically so vague they easily become urban legend. This is definitely the case with this call for prayers for the family of a fallen CIA agent.
SAMPLE CHAIN LETTER TEXT
Subject: FW: Prayers requested
On a sad note...... That CIA agent who was killed in Afghanistan at the prison uprising was a brother of ours in Christ. He had been a US Marine and had left the Marines and joined the CIA. He was the youth minister at the Church of Christ while they were stationed in North Carolina. His wife is now living in ALA at her parents home with their 3 small children. She has cancer and is not expected to live more than about 6 months.
Please pass this along for prayers for this family.
END CHAIN LETTER TEXT
On November 28, 2001, CIA officials confirmed that officer Johnny Michael Spann was killed in a prison riot where he was interrogating captured Taliban prisoners at a compound in Mazar-e-Sharif.
Spann was a 1992 graduate of Auburn University with a degree in criminal justice and law enforcement. He entered the Marine Corps after graduation and remained a Marine until he joined the CIA in 1999. He was 32 years old and lived with his wife, Shannon, their 6-month old son, and two daughters from Michael's first marriage (ages 9 and 4) in Winfield, Alabama. It is the girls' mother who, according to unidentified family members was battling cancer. (I've received unverified reports that she has since passed away). Spann's father has stated publicly that the family will ensure that his children are taken care of.
The chain letter above contains too little information to give Spann's family and legacy the respect it deserves. The Arlington National Cemetery erected an online memorial that includes several news pieces and photos from his funeral. Break this chain by directing people to the Arlington website (www.arlingtoncemetery.com/jmspann.htm) instead of forwarding this note.