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‘I Hope I’m Not Being Abducted’: Former U.S. Marine Found Dead in Russia


A former U.S. Marine, who was in Russia in preparation for a career in law, was reportedly found dead on Saturday. She was 34-year-old Catherine Serou, who went missing on Tuesday. Her mother told NPR she sent a final text.

“It says: ‘In a car with a stranger. I hope I’m not being abducted,'” said Mississippi resident Beccy Serou. “And that’s the last thing she wrote. She’s out there in this forest, I think, relying on her wits — if she hasn’t been killed — to stay alive.”

Catherine would never write her mother again. She purportedly entered a car with a stranger in the city of Nizhny Novgorod, 250 miles east of Moscow. A search ensued, but she turned up dead early Saturday. Local police said they found a suspect, who they identified only as a man in his early 40s and a history of criminal convictions. He was cooperating, they reportedly said.

Beccy Serou suggested her daughter had entered the stranger’s vehicle without waiting for the arrival of an Uber. Catherine had been going to a clinic because a payment did not process.

“I think that when she saw that the person wasn’t driving to the clinic, but instead was driving into a forest, she panicked,” her mother said.

Catherine Serou served in the Marines, went to Afghanistan, got a bachelor’s in design and a master’s in art history at the University of California, Davis. She sold her condominium to help pay for study in Russia to get a master’s in law at Lobachevsky University, her mother said. The plan was the return to the U.S. to become an immigration lawyer.

[Screengrab via NNRU]

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