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N.J. Mother To Get Payout At Last For Son's Death In 1983 Beirut Attack

MOORESTOWN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- A three-decades-old struggle has finally come to an end for a New Jersey mother who lost her U.S. Marine son to a terror attack in Lebanon.

The resolution came thanks to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling this week. Judith Young and other victims' relatives will split a $2 billion payout.

As CBS2's Brian Conybeare reported, a similar legal fight may be looming for victims of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

It has been 33 years since a suicide bomber killed 241 U.S. Marines in Beirut Lebanon.

"Whenever anybody mentions October 23, your heart just stops," said Young, a Gold Star mother.

Young, of Moorestown, New Jersey, lost her 22-year-old son, Sgt. Jeffrey Young in Beirut on that day in 1983. But Judith and 1,400 others who lost loved ones in Beirut, and the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia, just won a $2 billion dollar lawsuit against Iran, the state sponsor of those terror attacks.

Judith will get about $5 million because of a U.S. Supreme Court decision this week.

"It won't bring him back, but our goal was to keep the money away from Iran," she said.

There is a similar fight playing out in Congress right now, over a new law that would allow 9/11 victims' families to sue Saudi Arabia over its alleged role in the support of the terrorists who struck the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center.

"If Saudi Arabia helped promote the horrible terrorism of 9/11, they should have to pay the consequences," said U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.)

Schumer is a sponsor of the bill that would limit countries' sovereign immunity in terror attacks on U.S. soil. President Barack Obama, who met with the Saudi king this week, is threatening a veto.

Some fear the bill could open the U.S. government to lawsuits over civilians accidentally killed by drone strikes overseas. But John Fulco, whose Manhattan law firm helped seize Iran's money in the Beirut case, said there is a major difference.

"That is not intentionally killing civilians by flying planes into buildings, causing them to collapse, and killing 3,000 innocent people," Fulco said.

And Young has a warning for the 9/11 families about the potential fight ahead.

"It's going to be a tough road," she said. But she added that it is a battle worth fighting.

Young, who was the national president of the Gold Star mothers, said most of the $5 million will go to charity and care for monuments in her son's honor.

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