San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
Jessica Buchanan and Erik Landemalm will discuss their book "Impossible Odds: The Kidnapping of Jessica Buchanan and Her Dramatic Rescue by SEAL Team Six." A book signing will follow the discussion.
"Impossible Odds" is a harrowing and heartwrenching memoir of humanitarian aid worker Jessica Buchanan’s kidnapping by Somali land pirates, her three months in captivity, her rescue by the Navy SEALs, and her husband’s extraordinary efforts to help bring her home.
On October 25, 2011, 32-year-old Jessica was working for a humanitarian NGO in Somalia, training the local communities how to avoid the landmines and unexploded munitions that litter the conflict regions of East Africa and the Horn of Africa when she was kidnapped at gunpoint and held for ransom by Somali pirates who had moved their operations from the sea to land.
For the next three months, Jessica was terrorized by more than two dozen assault rifle carrying pirates. Held outdoors in filthy conditions and kept on a starvation diet while her health steadily deteriorated, negotiations for her $45 million ransom dragged on. Finally, after 93 days of fruitless negotiations, President Barack Obama ordered Navy Seal Team Six to raid the location and on January 25, 2012, while the President delivered his State of the Union speech to a national television audience, the rescue team of twenty-four members of SEAL Team Six parachuted from a C-130 under cover of darkness, hiked two miles to the location, and attacked the heavily armed hostiles on duty that night. The team killed all nine kidnappers, with no harm to the hostages, who were quickly airlifted out on a military rescue helicopter.
In riveting detail, "Impossible Odds" details Jessica and Erik’s mutual journey during those torturous months. Together they relate the events prior to the kidnapping, the drama of Jessica’s fight to stay alive, and Erik’s efforts to bolster and support the hunt for her while he acted as liaison between their two families, the FBI, professional hostage negotiators, and the United States government.
This event is a fundraiser for the National Press Club Journalism Institute.
When & Where
National Press Club Journalism Institute
The mission of the non-profit National Press Club Journalism Institute is to train communications professionals in a changing media environment, provide scholarships to the next generation of journalists, recognize excellence in journalism, house the records of the history of journalism in the nation’s capital and promote a free press, the cornerstone of a free society.
Located in the Eric Friedheim Library of the prestigious National Press Club in downtown Washington, D.C., the Institute is the premier research, reference and education venue for journalists, historians, academics and students in the nation’s capital.