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Susan Cohen, Whose Daughter Was Killed In Pan Am 103 Bombing, Reacts To Report Of Gadhafi's Death

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - Ousted Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi was killed when rebels stormed his hometown Thursday.

Gadhafi was alleged to be behind the bombing of Pan Am flight 103 back in 1988.

The 747 exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing 259 people on board and 11 on the ground. The plane was bound for John F. Kennedy International Airport. Among those on board was 20-year-old Theodora Cohen.

Susan Cohen tells 1010 WINS' Stan Brooks she's going to celebrate Gadhafi's death


Her mother, Susan Cohen, lives in Cape May Court House, New Jersey.

"I've been waiting a long time for this,"she told "If this is true this is going to be the happiest day of my life since Dec. 20, 1988. Lockerbie happened on Dec. 21st. This would be a great day. A tyrant has fallen. If this is true, that is a wonderful thing."


"I have waited many years for this," Cohen said. "It doesn't bring closure. Closure doesn't exist. Closure is a myth. It will not bring closure. But it is helpful. It does bring a sense of having some justice. I can say in the morning, 'Theo... he's gone. He's dead.' There's justice."

WCBS 880's Paul Murnane With Susan Cohen


Cohen applauded the recent United States operations in Libya.

"I will certainly give President Obama credit. It has been just horrible, Gadhafi has gotten away with the most horrible crimes for years," she said.

PanAm 103 Lockerbie, Scotland
The wreckage of PanAm 103 is seen in Lockerbie, Scotland - Dec 22, 1988 (credit: LETKEY/AFP/Getty Images)

"I want to thank the Libyan people, because they... if they had not done this, I think we would still be back in a so-called 'alliance' with Moammar Gadhafi. It never should've happened." Cohen was referring to the recent warming of relations between the U.S. and Libya, which started when the Libyan leader gave up his nuclear program during the George W. Bush administration.

Whatever warming may have occurred between the U.S. and Libya was certainly doused when the U.S. backed the rebels and provided air power to stop the Gadhafi regime from killing civilians.

"You can not deal with him. You can not make deals with him. All the governments knew what was happening to the Libyan people... the human rights violations... but they turned a blind eye to  it because it was all about the oil."

"I will be in grief, and pain and suffering for the rest of my life... but it makes a difference to know that he is gone," Cohen said.

What's your reaction to the death of Moammar Gadhafi? Sound off in our comments section.

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