Ky. woman, husband killed in Brussels bombing

Posted at 5:42 PM, Mar 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-27 11:34:03-04

Stephanie and Justin Shults, an American couple living in Brussels, have been confirmed dead following this week’s terrorist attack, family members said Saturday.

Their families had agonized after the State Department told them Wednesday the couple was safe, only to call back and inform them they had made a mistake and their loved ones were still missing. Family members had flown to Belgium Thursday in hopes of finding them, but they ended up identifying their bodies at a hospital.

The couple were dropping off Stephanie's mother at the airport when bombs exploded. They were waiting for Stephanie's mother to check in, her mother said. Stephanie's mother, who lives in Lexington, Kentucky, where Stephanie grew up,  escaped unhurt. 

Justin's brother confirmed their deaths on Twitter after posting that their car had been found at the airport.

RELATED: Missing couple's family agonizes after State Department said they were safe

Stephanie Shults, 29, and Justin Shults, 30,  were certified public accountants and been in working Brussels for about two years.

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Stephanie's employer, Mars, Incorporated, released the following statement about her death:

"Today we learned from Stephanie’s family that she and her husband, Justin, were among those killed in the attack on the Brussels airport. We are mourning the loss of our colleague and friend. Our hearts and thoughts are with their families, and with all those who are suffering during this terrible time."

Justin’s employer, Clarcor, also released the following statement:

“We have learned today that Justin Shults died in the bombing at Brussels Airport.

We grieve with his family and continue to offer our support as they mourn this unimaginable loss. Justin has been an integral member of our global finance team since May of 2012 and he has lived with his wife, Stephanie, in Brussels since 2014. He will be remembered by his CLARCOR community as an intelligent, kind and loyal friend and employee. Justin will be greatly missed by those who knew him.

We do not have news yet about Justin’s wife, Stephanie, and ask that you keep her and her family in your prayers.”

Justin and Stephanie Shults had been reported missing after Tuesday’s attack at the Brussels airport in Zaventem. Stephanie's mother had come to Belgium to visit them.

"I was waiting in line to check in, and she was sitting in the seats with her husband waiting for me to finish," said Stephanie's mother, Carolyn Moore.

The Shultses met while attending Vanderbilt University. They lived in Nashville before moving to Brussels for work.

Sascha and Alexander Pinczowski, of New York, were previously listed among the Americans missing, but their families have since confirmed that they were killed.