Cold Case Wiki
Iris Keening in 1944
Iris in 1944
Iris Keening in 2009
Iris in 2009
Iris Keening
Portrayed by Amy Dudgeon (1944)
Deanna Dunagan (2009)
Episode WASP
Status Arrested

Iris Keening was the rigid and gung-ho commanding officer (CO) of the WASPS in 1944. She disliked Vivian Lynn for supposedly not caring about her fellow pilots. It's this admirable quality that turned Iris into a killer.


Iris witnessed one of the WASP pilots, Edna Reed, die in a plane crash. Vivian reported that Herbert "Wolf" James sabotaged Edna's plane but Iris buried the report so the WASP program would remain in the military. Vivian wanted justice for Edna and urged her CO to come clean. Iris seemingly gave in and told Vivian that she should let their superiors know herself, but when Vivian walked away, Iris went over to her plane and sabotaged it by switching the fuel and coolant lines, ensuring Vivian's silence. She doctored the flight log to make it seem like Vivian flew to North Carolina instead of New York. When Vivian was reported missing, Iris led the search party for her to confuse everyone.

Iris has written a book about the WASPs in 2009. She told the cold case team that the WASPs' farewell was "Happy landings, always". This is the last thing she said to Vivian. Wolf confessed to Edna's death but revealed that only Iris knew that Vivian wanted him arrested. Her guilt was further cemented when the cold case team saw that Iris left Vivian's name off the flight schedule before she was reported missing. Iris remained unrepentant, insisting her actions were all in the name of giving women a chance in the military. Despite this, Iris imagines seeing her younger self in the two-way mirror as she is arrested, knowing full well that she just ruined her own life.

Iris is a foil to Betty Jo Henders; they both thought that Vivian was arrogant but Betty Jo saw a softer side to her. Iris never did, which made it easy for her to commit murder.