Local/State

Pan Am bombing relatives in NJ relieved Gadhafi dead

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Relatives of the victims of the Pan Am 103 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988 say they're relieved to hear that Moammar Gadhafi is dead.

270 people were killed including the son of one South Jersey couple.

Bob and Eileen Monetti of Cherry Hill got word of Ghadaffi's death about 8:00 a.m. when their daughter called and told them to turn on the TV.

"I think I still feel a kind of shock, a kind of surprise, a kind of numbness about it all," Eileen said.

The Monetti's 20-year-old son Rick was a Syracuse University student returning home from a semester abroad when he was killed in the Lockerbie crash.

They're not shedding any tears for the man they hold responsible for their son's death.

"I'm happy that he's gone in a larger sense because he was an evil man. He supported terrorist activities throughout the world including Pan Am 103 and I'm glad he's gone," Eileen said.

The Monettis are hoping Ghadaffi's death opens the door to finding out more about who planned, made, and placed the bomb that took down their son's plane.

"It would be really nice to get all the rest of the facts out and find out the other people involved and chase them down," Bob said.

Kara Weipz, Rick's sister, tells the Associated Press she was shocked. The Mount Laurel resident says the world is a better and safer place without Gadhafi.

Weipz says she hopes Gadhafi left behind evidence of Libya's involvement in the bombing that claimed all 259 aboard and 11 on the ground.

The Monettis have been fielding phone calls from reporters all over the world today.

They're not celebrating, but say there is a sense of satisfaction.

Meanwhile, Susan Cohen of Cape May Court House, whose 20-year-old daughter Theodora was killed in the explosion over Scotland in 1988, says she's going out to buy a bottle of expensive champagne to celebrate.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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new jersey, libya, local/state
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