A Duluth soldier’s mom named Joan Najbar, who has protested the war, wrote a letter to her son stationed in Iraq. Joan’s letter came back marked “deceased”. Read more on Joan Najbar’s lawsuit below.
Joan Najbar filed a federal lawsuit last month over the postal service’s error.
Najbar’s son Sam Eininger was serving with the National Guard in Iraq in 2006 when her letter she wrote was returned marked “deceasaed”. Joan Najbar is wanting damages for emotional distress, loss of income, attorneys fees and other expenses.
The claim for $118,000 in damages that she filed with the U.S. Postal Service in 2008 denied twice. A letter from the Postal Service said its investigation found no negligence.
In her lawsuit, Najbar said she mailed a letter to her son on Sept. 29, 2006. The letter came back to her two weeks later with “DECEASED” stamped in red on the front of the envelope.
Eininger, 24, spent 22 months in Iraq and is now an environmental sciences student at the University of Minnesota, Duluth.
“I was out on patrol, and I got a message to call my mom,” Eininger recalled Tuesday. “I called her immediately after I got back, and she told me what happened. She didn’t sound pleased. I couldn’t blame her.”
Najbar then contacted the Red Cross, which “was ultimately able to inform her that her son had not been killed,” the suit said.
“This happened while he was … being shot at in Baghdad. That’s not OK … not to even say oops or sorry,” Najbar, a clinical social worker, said Tuesday.
Joan Najbar stated that she never received an apology or an explanation from the Postal Service, the lawsuit said. She described the incident as “somebody’s cruel little joke.”
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