Chris Stevens Was Sixth U.S. Ambassador Killed in Line of Duty

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Sept. 12 2012 9:04 AM

Stevens Was the Sixth U.S. Ambassador Killed in the Line of Duty. Who Were the Other Five?

A vehicle and the surrounding area are engulfed in flames after it was set on fire inside the US consulate
Chris Stevens (R), seen here in 2011, was killed Tuesday during an attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya

Photo by Marwan Naamani/AFP/Getty Images.

Ambassador Chris Stevens was killed Tuesday night during an attack on the American consulate in Libya, becoming the sixth U.S. ambassador to be killed in the line of duty.

Who were the other five? The State Department Office of the Historian with the answer (via the Associated Press and the New York Times):

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  • 1.) Adolph Dubs, in Afghanistan, 1979
  • 2.) Francis E. Meloy Jr., in Lebanon, 1976
  • 3.) Rodger P. Davies, in Cyprus, 1974
  • 4.) Cleo A. Noel Jr., in Sudan, 1973
  • 5.) John Gordon Mein, in Guatemala, 1968

Two other U.S. ambassadors died in plane crashes abroad: Arnold L. Raphel, in Pakistan in 1988, and Laurence A. Steinhardt, in Canada in 1950.

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. Follow him on Twitter.