American Father, Son Killed in Kabul Hospital Attack Are Named

Two Americans killed by an Afghan police officer this week in Kabul were identified as Jon Gabel and his visiting father, according to the university where the younger Gabel guest lectured.

Mohammad Hadi Hadayati, vice chancellor of Kabul University, told NBC News that Jon Gabel taught computer science and managed a small health clinic.

John Gabel
John Gabel sits with his parents as they visited their son in Afghanistan. John and his father, Gary Gabel, were killed in an attack on a Kabul hospital. Courtesy of Mohammad Hadi Dedaya

Gabel started working with Kabul University two years ago and earned a reputation as an honest and helpful colleague, Hedayati said.

“All the time he was contributing,” he recalled in a phone interview. “He was trying to bring changes to our system.”

Gabel and his parents were from the Chicago area. They had gone to visit American pediatrician Dr. Jerry Umanos at a hospital run by U.S.-charity CURE International when the rogue cop opened fire.

Umanos also died in the shooting. The attacker - who turned his gun on himself - remains hospitalized.

Jon Gabel’s wife was wounded but his mother was unharmed, Hedayati added.

He said the news of Jon Gabel's death was met by an outpouring of grief from faculty and students.

“We didn’t feel that he was not Afghan,” he said. “His name will be written in the Kabul University’s history.”

Relatives of the Gabels could not immediately be reached for comment.

-Cassandra Vinograd