The body of slain American hostage Luke Somers was flown Wednesday to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, defense officials said. Al Qaeda militants murdered Somers, 33, and South African hostage Peter Korkie as U.S. commandos tried to storm their compound in Yemen last week. Somers, a freelance photojournalist, had been kidnapped a year earlier while living in Yemen, where he taught English.
U.S. officials say they had no choice but to attempt a rescue because Somers' captors had threatened to kill him after an earlier raid failed to secure his freedom. They say they did not know Korkie was being held at the same location and were unaware of negotiations for his imminent release. The militants shot both men as the U.S. special forces closed in and they died while being evacuated.
Somers' family was at Dover to greet his body when the C-17 cargo plane arrived.