Posts Tagged With: The Women of Lockerbie

One Man’s Journey After the Bombing of Pan Am Flight 103

Sharing here the link to an article written by a Philadelphia Inquirer reporter on December 21, 1993, the day ground was broken at Arlington National Cemetery for the building of The Lockerbie Cairn that would memorialize the 270 souls lost on Flight 103, when it was destroyed by a terrorist bomb attack on December 21, 1988.

David O’Reilly’s article tells mostly the story of one man’s journey after the bombing, yet it also illustrates the greater bonding of human souls forged in shared grief and tragedy.

“The Women of Lockerbie,” a 90-minute play loosely based on stories from the aftermath of the bombing of Flight 103, can be seen this weekend at the Allen County Public Library. The production is presented by all for One productions, inc. For ticket information and times, click here.

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The Lockerbie Cairn

The Lockerbie Cairn – Arlington National Cemetery

Approximately eight miles southeast of Lockerbie, Scotland, lies the Corsehill Quarry of Annan, Scotland. On December 21, 1988, it was in the flight path of Pan Am Flight 103, which was destroyed by a terrorist bomb killing all 259 passengers and 11 citizens of the town of Lockerbie. Two-hundred and seventy souls lost in this attack on America.

Five years later, on December 21, 1993, a groundbreaking ceremony was held in Arlington National Cemetery for a memorial that would honor the dead. The sandstone blocks for the memorial come from the Corsehill Quarry. They were a gift from the people of Scotland, financed entirely from private donations.

A cairn is a traditional Scottish stone memorial. The Lockerbie Cairn at Arlington is constructed of 270 sandstone blocks fitted together into a circular tower rising eleven feet in the air. It consists of one stone for each person lost in the terrorist attack including 11 Lockerbie citizens killed as fragments of the plane landed on their town. The 259 passengers on the flight included citizens from 22 different countries. Among the 189 Americans on board were 15 active duty military personnel and 10 military veterans. Thirty-five were students from Syracuse University who had been studying abroad.

The sandstone from the Corsehill Quarry was also used in the construction of the base of the Stature of Liberty.

“The Women of Lockerbie,” a 90-minute fictional play loosely based on the events surrounding the attack on Flight 103, is being presented by Fort Wayne’s all for One productions, incthis weekend. For times and ticket information, click here.

Ponder & Chat: How have memorials helped you deal with grief in your life?

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You’ve Gotta Meet “The Women of Lockerbie”

“Our hurts unite us. They define us. They make us not only human, but a family.” Billy Coffey
The year 1988 began with Miami defeating Oklahoma for the college football championship. Two days later Margaret Thatcher became Britain’s longest-serving prime minister of the century. Debi Thomas and Brian Boitano became U.S. Figure Skating Champions. CBS premiered a new show called “48 Hours,” and “Phantom of the Opera” opened at New York’s Majestic Theater. Judge Anthony Kennedy received unanimous approval to the U.S. Supreme Court.
In May of 1988, the Soviets began their withdrawal from Afghanistan. In July, the U.S.S. Vincennes, a naval warship patrolling in the Persian Gulf, mistakenly shot down an Iranian commercial airbus killing all 290 people onboard.  August saw leaders from Iran and Iraq begin talks to end their eight-year war. Earthquakes and hurricanes, nuclear testing and missile launches tested human resilience and faith.
On December 21st, Pan Am’s Flight 103 exploded after leaving Heathrow Airport in London for New York. All 259 people onboard were killed, and 11 more on the ground died as the wreckage fell to earth in Lockerbie, Scotland.
Years later among the hills of Lockerbie roams an American mother looking for the remains of the son she lost in the crash of Pan Am Flight 103.  She is accompanied by her husband, who has kept things together through the required acts of finality that accompany a death, at the expense of his own grief.
The couple encounter the Women of Lockerbie, who are striving against the U.S. Government over the disposition and possession of the clothing found among the crash ruins. They are determined to convert the act of hatred into an act of love by washing the clothing pieces and returning them to the families of those killed.
Playwright Deborah Brevoort wrote The Women of Lockerbie in the structure of a Greek tragedy. The fictional work, though loosely inspired by true events, is a poetic drama about the triumph of love over hate.  It’s powerfully packed with the raw emotions that accompany grief and loss and examples of the individuality of how we walk through it.
Presented by all for One productions, inc. at the Allen County Public Library Auditorium in downtown Fort Wayne, The Women of Lockerbie runs through May 13th.  Tickets may be obtained by calling (260) 622-4610.
Ponder & Chat: When was the last time you were emotionally moved by a play or movie? What was the underlying theme that touched you? How did it relate to your own life story or life lessons?
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