Alumnus James Foley returns to Marquette after 44 day capture in Libya

While working for GlobalPost, James Foley, Marquette graduate in 1999, was captured by Gaddafi forces after spending a day riding with the rebels. He was released after 44 days, but his chilling story of bravery and loss is something the audience will remember forever.


  1. The story began on April 4th, 2011, when Foley was taking after a gunfight in the hills by Gaddafi loyalist forces. Soon after word began returning to America that he was under capture, caught in the middle of the violent Libyan rebellion. 
  2. 32/365. Freedom to Manu Brabo, Clare Gillis, James Foley & Anton Harmell.  20/04/2011.
    32/365. Freedom to Manu Brabo, Clare Gillis, James Foley & Anton Harmell. 20/04/2011.
  3. Rochester Journalist Held In Libya For 13 Days
  4. As Foley's family and friends began to put diplomatic pressure on American leaders to work for his release, anticipation grew that Foley may soon be coming home, after 44 days of capture.
  5. Marquette Grad Held Captive In Libya Returns Home
  6. With Foley now home, he began to spread across the country to tell his story of bravery. About six months later, Foley came to Marquette to give a speech on the state of journalism, his story, and what Marquette means to him. The lecture was part of a series dedicated to Milwaukee Journal founder and Marquette alum Lucius Nieman, who was known for his commitment to truth and unbiased journalism. In this vein, there was no better speaker than James Foley, who drew a capacity crowd at the large AMU ballroom C on Dec. 7, 2011. 
  7. Soon after the crowd was in place, Diederich College of Communcation dean Laurie Bergen opened up the ceremony with short words about the place of journalism in war, and Milwaukee Journal founder Lucius Nieman. After a short introduction by broadcasting student James Peterson, it was time for what the audience came to see: James Foley.
  8. Initially he began by speaking about his views on journalism and what it meant to the war at that time.
  9. Foley said that his this Libyan revolution was different. There was no order or targets. Children were shooting guns, and not knowing where to aim them. There was no order and that was why he deemed it so necessary to be there. But one morning it would all change.