A charity worker from Britain was shot dead after singing Amazing Grace to a group of missionary medics in Nigeria.
The British charity worker had been kidnapped and held to ransom in Nigeria with his fellow Christian missionaries David and Shirley Donovan, who were alongside Squire and Alanna Carson. The missionaries had been abducted in the southern Delta state.
Shirley Donovan described the last moments of the life of Ian Squire, he told the Daily Telegraph how the group’s spirits were lifted when the kidnappers returned a guitar and Squire started to play Amazing Grace.
“It was the perfect song, and at that point things began to look not quite as bad,” he said. “But then, after Ian finished playing, he stood up, and a salvo of gunshots killed him instantly. We didn’t see who did it, but it was obvious that someone in the gang had shot him. It was terrifying to see.
“We jumped out of the shack and into the water as we thought they were coming for us next, but a member of the gang came and put us back in there with Ian for the rest of the day.”
The 57-year-old Donovan and his 58-year-old wife started the medical charity New Foundations in 2003. The two revealed that it was their Christian faith that kept them going after early setbacks that included thefts and severe illness.
All the while they were kidnapped, the group revealed that they kept their spirits up by playing a version of the BBC Radio 4 quiz The Unbelievable Truth, where contestants have to tell fact from fiction, with Shirley Donovan saying the game was “prosaic but comforting”.
Fortunately, the captives were freed after the kidnappers told them a ransom had been paid. Having survived the terrific encounter, Donovan revealed that the smell of the leather and air conditioning in the two SUVs that came to pick them up made them feel like they had stepped from one world into another.