May 26 2022 — On May 23 2022, the Central Intelligence Agency held its annual memorial ceremony to pay tribute to the men and women of the CIA who have died in the line of duty. Two stars were added to the Memorial Wall this year.
The Memorial Wall now has 139 stars. Before 9/11, the number of stars per year was 78/54 = 1.4. After 9/11, the rate greatly increased. Actually it doubled to 61/21 = 2.9. What can possibly explain this inflation? Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY
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A special page “CIA Book of Honor” has been created. This will allow you to find easily the references to the stars we have already written about. I will try to keep this page up to date.
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The CIA dedicated two new stars on its Memorial Wall, each honoring a CIA officer whose service must remain known only to a select few.
During the ceremony, Director Burns presented the families of the most recently fallen officers with marble replicas of their loved ones’ stars. The Memorial Wall now has 139 stars.
No 2020 Ceremony
Two years ago, I asked Molly Hale if the CIA annual ceremony had been cancelled in 2020? No answer…
To the best of my knowledge, the annual memorial ceremony honoring the men and women of CIA who have died in the line of duty was cancelled in 2020, probably because of the pandemic.
Then, on September 9 2020, the Agency tweeted this message:
“The Memorial Wall features 135 stars to honor officers who gave their lives in service to their country. This month, we will celebrate those lives by highlighting their contributions to CIA’s mission.” [Sep 9, 2020 — 6:00 PM]
Zero information about the 2021 stars
Last year, four stars were added to the wall. The names and stories behind these four new stars remain classified.
“Of the 137 stars the wall now holds, 37 remain classified, including the years, locations, and details of the work that led to the deaths.” [CIA]
I will come back to this issue as I am not sure where this number come from. I believe that only 4 of the first 78 stars are still classified.
And I can only count 32 classified stars since 2001, including 4 names known to the media. [Glen A. Doherty, Tyrone S. Woods, Ranya Abdelsayed and Nathan Chapman]
But this only accounts for 36 classified stars
Perhaps one could add the star of Mark S. Rausenberger as the circumstances of his death remain classified.
What do we know?
Obviously (see Timeline below), stars 134 & 135 died prior September 2020.
According to the NYT, a CIA officer was killed in combat in Somalia in November 2020. This officer could be star 136.
“The officer — who wasn’t named — was a former member of the Navy’s SEAL Team 6 and belonged to the Special Activities Center, the agency’s paramilitary division, the New York Times reported .“
Since the identity of the 4 new stars was not revealed, it is however very likely that they died in recent years.
Michael Goodboe was a former Navy SEAL who later worked for the CIA’s paramilitary unit. Goodboe died in a terrorist attack in Somalia in November 2020.
Prior to September 11 2001, 78 stars were chiseled into the CIA marble Memorial wall. Today, the number of stars had grown to 139.
Before 9/11, the number of stars per year was 78/54 = 1.4. After 9/11, the rate greatly increased. Actually it doubled to 61/21 = 2.9. What can possibly explain this inflation?
July 1974 — The Memorial Wall is created; 31 stars chiseled into the marble.
1987 — First Memorial Ceremony is held with Deputy Director Robert M. Gates presiding; number of stars on the wall has grown to 50.
1997 — 70 stars, 29 of which had names
2002 — 79 stars
2004 — 83 stars
2009 — 90 stars
2013 — 107 stars
2014 — 111 stars
2016 — 117 stars
May 2017 — 8 new stars; 125 stars chiseled into the wall
May 2018 — 4 new stars; 129 stars
May 2019 — 4 new stars; 133 stars
September 2020 — ??? 2 new stars; 135 stars ???
May 25 2021 — 4 new stars; 137 stars
May 23 2022 — 2 new stars; 139 stars
CIA Honors Its Fallen at Annual Memorial Ceremony (May 25 2021) — CIA Website
Star 136 — Twitter : https://twitter.com/vcdgf555/status/1331861995876859905
CIA Honors Fallen Officers in Annual Memorial Ceremony (May 23 2022) — CIA Website
CIA Honors its Fallen in Annual Memorial Ceremony (May 25 2021)