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SU remembers victims of Pan Am Flight 103 on anniversary of bombing

Tom Magnarelli
Friends and families of the victims of Pan Am Flight 103 attend a ceremony at Syracuse University.

A remembrance ceremony for the bombing victims of Pan Am Flight 103 was held at Syracuse University yesterday. To commemorate the anniversary, a small ceremony was held for friends and families at Hendricks Chapel and a service at Arlington National Cemetery took place simultaneously.

On the SU campus, the Crouse Chimes rang 35 times, once for each Syracuse University student killed in the attack. Judy O’Rourke is a mentor to the Remembrance and Lockerbie Scholars and said the ceremony was meant to honor all people who have died in terrorist attacks.

"The children of those who were killed, the siblings of those who were killed and watching them go on with their lives is absolutely inspiring," O'Rourke said. "All the things that have been done to try and improve safety in travel and airlines and try to foster peace, that’s amazing what these families have done. I can't say enough how they have changed the world positively. The 21st of December 1988 was just a horrible day. The fact that so many people died in a terrorist bombing was just awful."

The bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 took place over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988. SU students were returning home after studying abroad. 270 people died in the attack including two students from SUNY Oswego and a couple from Clay.   

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York.