Skip to main content

Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco Delivers Remarks at the 34th Pan Am 103 Memorial Service


Arlington, VA
United States

Thank you for that kind welcome. I am humbled to return to this hallowed place and to join you — the families, friends, loved ones — of those we lost 34 years ago in a senseless act of terror.

Thank you especially to Kara, Stephanie and the Memorial Committee for your work in bringing us together today — and for your work every day to lift up the legacies of those we remember.

We gather at this cairn — built from 270 blocks of sandstone from a quarry near Lockerbie, Scotland.

This cairn serves as a marker of remembrance.

But a cairn can also serve as a marker on a trail or path — to show the way forward, to see the promise of the journey ahead.

Since its dedication in November 1995, this memorial has served as a gathering place each year to bring together the families and friends of those lost that dark night.

We gather here to remember the 270 innocent souls taken from us in an instant of terror.

We gather to remember their lives and honor their memories – and to remember what made them special.

And while today we look back and remember them and what they meant for each of you.

We also gather today at this cairn to look forward — and, in the words of the Syracuse remembrance motto – to act forward.

For all those who remember today and who have been acting forward and pursuing justice for the victims and their families, the last 34 years have been a steady journey toward justice.

Toward a day when we can say that all those who were responsible for this act of terror have been held accountable.

So we come here to pledge to the friends and families of those lost that we will not rest until our work is done, until you have learned all you can about the event that changed your lives and until justice has been served.

In recent days, together we took a significant step forward on that path toward justice.

Thanks to tireless work across generations — the alleged bombmaker has been indicted, arrested and now is in United States custody and facing charges.

We mark this milestone on the path to justice because of dedicated agents, investigators and prosecutors on both sides of the Atlantic.

And we reaffirm that no amount of time or distance will diminish our commitment to seeing justice done — no matter how long it takes.

But the progress we mark today would not have been possible without all of you.

For 34 years, you have worked tirelessly, united through tragedy, to inspire all of us – those of us in the Department of Justice and our Scottish partners who are with us today.

Thank you to Lord Advocate Dorothy Bain for being with us today.

Your presence speaks to the enduring commitment of our two countries to see justice done.

Since the very first moments of this tragedy — from the hospitality of the Scottish people, to the tremendous efforts of Scottish law enforcement, we have stood shoulder to shoulder.

Without the skill and determination of our partners in Scottish law enforcement, we would not be where we are today.

Finally, to the family and friends of the Pan Am 103 victims —

Year after year you have persevered, and you have turned your grief and pain into action.

You have honored the memory of your loved ones.

Your resilience and grace in the face of tremendous loss is an inspiration to us all.

I am proud to stand with you –

Today as we remember –

And tomorrow as we continue on the path to justice.

Thank you.

Updated December 21, 2022