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International soldiers identified in Pulaski County flooding deaths

Sergeant Cody Fulkerson with the Missouri State Highway Patrol confirmed a seventh victim was found Tuesday after severe flooding in Pulaski County over the weekend.

Seven people are now confirmed dead.

Sheriff Ron Long said two different cars drove into flooded roadways and were swept away by water around 8:20 p.m on Saturday.

Both incidents happened in the north central part of the county and less than 1 minute apart.

The first incident happened near Crocker on Highway U near Buffalo Road. Sheriff Long said a fireman spotted the car, which had been swept away into a nearby creek.

Deputies, the Missouri State Highway Patrol and firefighters responded to the scene and found two men who had drowned inside the car.

“But then we found out this morning that there may be two others, so the search continued,” Sheriff Long said. “We found two other men who were actually outside of the vehicle that were in the creek. We have reports too that there may have been a fifth one, so we are now searching for a fifth individual that is missing.”

The search continued Monday and Tuesday for the possible fifth victim. Sgt. Fulkerson said the body was located 6 miles downstream from Highway U where the four other victims were found.

Sheriff Long said the men were international soldiers who were temporarily stationed at Fort Leonard. The U.S. State Department has notified their family members and the men were identified Wednesday.

The victims have been identified as: Maj. Mohammad Hassan Ibrahim, 32, Egypt; Maj. Akram Abu Al-rub, 38, Jordan; Capt. Ahmed Moussouni, 32, Algeria; Capt. Ahmed Abdelghani, 29, Egypt; and Capt. Hasman Hussin, 33, Malaysia.

Fort Leonard Wood officials said the bodies will be returned to the soldiers’ home countries to be buried.

The second incident happened near Dixon on Highway O and Jones Creek just 45 seconds later.

Sheriff Long confirmed Ron Gray, 53, and Sandra Tilley, 50, died from drowning inside the second car. He said they were both well known in the community.

“In the same spot almost a month ago, there was an individual that tried to drive across the same spot,” he said. “He and his daughter were stranded in that vehicle and this guy that actually perished last night, hooked them up in his pickup truck and pulled them out of that water. He rescued them at the same spot that he died.”

The American Red Cross has opened a shelter at the Saint Robert Community Center for anyone who may be affected from the flooding and need emergency assistance.

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