Michael Speicher (12 July 1957 – 16 January 1991) was an American Navy pilot shot down over Iraq during the Gulf War—the first American killed in combat during that conflict. Speicher was shot down on January 17, 1991; then-Defense Secretary Dick Cheney announced his death on television, affirming that America had suffered its first casualty of the war.
Speicher's body was not recovered, and in October 2002, the Navy changed his status to "missing/captured," citing a lack of evidence that the pilot was, in fact, dead.
Following the U.S.-led mission in Iraq in 2003, investigators were able to resume the search for the missing war hero. In July, 2009, investigators received a lead from an Iraqi citizen who claimed to have been present when Speicher's body was found and buried. Acting on this information, they located remains which were positively identified as those of Speicher, thanks to dental records. Speicher's death was officially confirmed on August 2, 2009.