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News | Jan. 16, 2015

We Remember: Colonel Charles R. Ray murdered in Paris

By DIA History Office

On Jan. 18, 1982, Army Lieutenant Colonel Charles R. Ray, the Assistant Army Attaché, was murdered when a lone terrorist shot and killed him outside of his Paris apartment.  At 9:00 a.m. a lone gunman shot Ray at close range with a pistol as he walked to his car. A terrorist group known as the Lebanese Armed Revolutionary Faction claimed responsibility for the murder.

Ray was born in New York City and was commissioned in the U.S. Army in 1960. Ray had been stationed in Paris as the Assistant Army Attaché for 18 months. He was a distinguished Military Intelligence officer, a decorated Vietnam veteran, and serving his first assignment as a military attaché. He was married with two children. President Ronald Reagan promoted Ray to Colonel posthumously on 3 June 1982. 

Today the Defense Intelligence Agency’s Patriots Memorial honors our personnel who died in the service of the United States.  It commemorates the profound individual sacrifices made on behalf of the United States by DIA members and acts as a reminder of the selflessness, dedication, and courage required to confront national challenges in the past, present and future.

Defense Attachés are an integral part of the DIA team.  DIA uses all-source defense intelligence to prevent strategic surprise and deliver a decision advantage to war fighters, defense planners, and policymakers.  The agency collects and analyzes key data using a variety of tools, and deploys its personnel globally, alongside war fighters and interagency partners, to defend America’s national security interests.