NORTHPORT, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Wednesday marks the 30th anniversary of the Marine barracks bombing in Beirut, Lebanon that killed 241 U.S. service members.
As WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell reported, the pain is still fresh for a Northport, Long Island man who lost his brother.
“I looked out the window and there was three Marines marching up my driveway and I met them at the front door. They were saluting me with tears in their eyes,” Raymond Boccia told Haskell.
Boccia’s brother, Marine Capt. Joseph Boccia Jr., was among those killed in Beirut.
“We all miss him. We all wonder exactly what would Joe be,” he told Haskell.
Before the first World Trade Center bombing, the attack on the U.S.S. Cole and the Sept. 11 terror attacks, there was the Marine Barracks blast in Beirut, Lebanon.
“After 9/11, in the back of my head there was a piece, a part saying ‘welcome to our world,'” Boccia said. “It’s emotional. It’s an emotional time and I always think back. Our duty is to remember.”
Joseph was 28 when he was killed.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has directed that flags on state government buildings be flown at half-staff on Wednesday to honor the victims.
“On this somber occasion, we honor the sacrifice of these 241 brave individuals who gave their lives 30 years ago serving our nation,” Governor Cuomo said. “I join with all New Yorkers in remembering their service and offer my thoughts and prayers to the friends and family of these heroes.”
The attack marked the deadliest single-day death toll for the United States Marine Corps since World War II’s Battle of Iwo Jima.
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