The parents of Kayla Mueller, a humanitarian worker who was held captive, tortured and killed by ISIS, honored their daughter at the Republican National Convention with a moving testimonial that called on Americans to “stay strong like Kayla.”
Kayla Mueller, 26, was on a humanitarian mission in Turkey on Aug. 3, 2013, when ISIS kidnapped her after crossing the Syrian border to visit a hospital. In February 2015, U.S. officials confirmed that she had died while in ISIS custody, but her body was never recovered.
“Everywhere Kayla went, people smiled,” her mother, Marsha Mueller, said Thursday night during a recorded segment. “Kayla had a gift to be able to see the world through someone else’s eyes.
Her father, Carl Mueller, recounted the conditions she faced while held hostage by ISIS — living in solitary confinement, tortured and raped by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS.
“For 18 months, she endured,” Carl Mueller said. “And we endured an agonizing back-and-forth between us, the Obama administration and ISIS. We put all our faith in the government.”
“But,” he said, “our government let us down.”
Carl Mueller charged that the Obama administration “hid behind policy so much that we felt hopeless when they kept us from negotiating to save Kayla’s life.” He said they have not heard from Democratic presidential nominee, and then vice president, Joe Biden.