A Muslim soldier and his wife in North Carolina, upset over how their infant son’s body was handled after his death, may join a legal battle in Kansas over whether the military respects religious freedoms.
Pfc. Eli Agee and his wife, Mackenzie, are angry that an autopsy was performed – over their objections – on their son after he died May 3 at his home at Fort Bragg, N.C. The Agees are Muslim and believe an autopsy desecrates the body.
While doctors suspect sudden infant death syndrome, the Army said the autopsy will determine the exact cause of death. An official also said the Army is sensitive to the couple’s religious views.
The Agees have contacted the Military Religious Freedom Foundation about possible legal action. The foundation expects to include their complaint in a pending Kansas lawsuit, and Mackenzie Agee said the couple may file a separate case.
The foundation and an atheist soldier from Fort Riley are suing the Department of Defense in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Kan., over what they allege is a pattern of the military violating soldiers’ religious liberties. This week, a judge set a May 27 deadline for responses from federal attorneys. (MORE)