25th Anniversary of Beirut Barracks Bombing
Today’s the 25th anniversary of the Hezbollah bombing of the US Marine barracks in Beirut. On my way to work, I pass a memorial to Edward Iacovino of Warwick, who lost his life that day.
Though it’s been a quarter of a century, for Elizabeth Iacovino, who lost her son Edward S. Iacovino at the age of 20 to the blast, it still feels like yesterday.
“This anniversary is very sad. It brings back all my memories of when he was a child,” said Iacovino on Monday.
“The pain has never gone away. I have pain in my heart that will always stay with me.”
A Lance Corporal at the time of his death, Iacovino was promoted to Corporal posthumously. There is a monument to Iacovino at the intersection of Beach Avenue and West Shore Road.
Brenda Gomes, a disabled veteran of Desert Storm/Desert Shield, who is also president of the local Disabled American Veterans Chapter, said it’s unfortunate that many Americans don’t take the time to adequately honor those killed in that attack.
“The years continue to go by, and there is less and less that is remembered about this tragedy. It seems like once there is a new conflict and a new tragedy, all of the old conflicts and tragedies are forgotten,” said Gomes.
Mayor Scott Avedisian, however, has by executive decree, named Oct. 23, Edward Iacovino day in the city of Warwick to honor his memory.
In her Conimicut home, Iacovino has a curio cabinet with her son’s Purple Heart and military ribbons, pictures and citations on display. One of the pictures depicts Edward in fatigues and wearing a helmet leaning on the hood of a jeep.
“They were his two favorite things,” she says of the vehicles Edward maintained as a mechanic and the uniform he wore.
ADDENDUM: I thought hard about calling attention to this comment given the source. But it illustrates a fundamental difference in outlook and priorities.
Was this the attack that made Regan [sic] cut and run from Lebanon? ~ Posted by: Pat Crowley at October 23, 2008 9:57 PM
I posted this item to acknowledge the sacrifices made by one of our own. But while I sought to memorialize, others can’t help but politicize.
They shouldn’t have been there and they served no purpose in being there. This makes their death a double tragedy. You might want to reflect on the ill conceived plan and planner that put them in such a vulnerable position in the first place. ~ Posted by OldTimeLefty at October 24, 2008 12:26 PM
Anyone else want to politicize?