San Diego

Wreath-Laying Ceremony Remembers USS Cole Bombing in Mt. Hope

The memorial was held at the gravesite of a local service member killed in the attack

Service members who lost their lives in the USS Cole bombing were honored at the 17th Annual Wreath Laying Ceremony in San Diego Thursday.

The memorial service took place at the Mt. Hope Cemetery on Market Street, near the Mountain View neighborhood of San Diego around 10 a.m.

Lakiba Palmer of San Diego was remembered as one of 17 sailors killed during the suicide bombing attack in the Yemeni port of Aden on Oct. 12, 2000. The memorial was held at Palmer's gravesite.

Veterans of Foreign War (VFW) First District Commander, Douglas Scholl, spoke at the memorial, recounting the tragedy.

“The first major loss of life in the United States Navy sea since the USS Stark in 1987. So it was quite surprising to us, and there was a lot of crew members shaken up and we all wanted to band together and get to the Cole to help the USS Cole,” said Scholl.

VFW members ended the ceremony by placing white flowers on the U.S. flag and the U.S. emblem symbolizing their undying love for their comrades and the countries openness to those oppressed.

“That’s what we are here to do today, is actually remember Palmer, pay a token to her service, and remember her and all those others that passed on [the] US Cole," added Scholl.

The ceremony ended with the sounds of bugles. Palmer's mother and survivors of the attack were present.

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