A letter from the Department of Defense

Dear Mr and Mrs Dumhangle,

The Department of Defense regrets to inform you that your son, Seaman William Dumhangle, has been killed in a chess game in the Western Pacific Ocean.

While the details of the action that led to Seaman Dumhangle’s demise remain classified, I am able to inform you that he gave his life in the establishment of a fianchetto on the b2 square in the middle game, as part of an end game strategy leading to zugzwang of the opponent’s king.

We expect that the United States will emerge from this game as Northwestern Pacific Regional Chess Champion, with automatic entry as top seed in the All-Asia Championship Tournament, to be played in Beijing and/or Siberia.

At this time of sorrow, it will no doubt be a source of pride for you to know that, before his sacrifice, Seaman Dumhangle was directly involved in the elimination of at least two of the opponent’s pawns.

Yours sincerely,

P.T. Dej

Chief Scorekeeper

En passant: If you are not the next of kin of the Military Asset whose demise is reported above, please destroy this notice and do not report its contents to any other person.