Somber, Unique Remembrance Honors Lives Lost During USS Cole Attack

Speakers remembered the names of the victims, including that of 22-year-old San Diegan, Lakiba Palmer

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Monday marks 20 years since the deadly terrorist attack on the Navy destroyer USS Cole. To commemorate the tragedy, a ceremony was held in Norfolk, Virginia, where USS Cole is stationed, and included a reading of all 17 sailors who lost their lives in the bombing.

It was a smaller crowd due to the pandemic, but still included a wreath-laying, 21 gun salutes, taps, the reading of names and a commemorative flyover.

Speakers remembered the victims, including 22-year-old Lakiba Palmer, who grew up in San Diego, as well as the sailors who jumped into action to tend to the injured and secure the ship.

"Our Cole sailors rose to the occasion, upheld our finest traditions by rescuing their shipmates, fighting to save their ship under extremely arduous conditions, and in doing so, personified our navy and American fighting spirit," said Adm. Christopher Grady, Commander of U.S. Fleet Forces Command.

The suicide bombing tied to al Qaeda took place on Oct. 12, 2000.

Monday will mark 20 years since the terrorist attack on the Navy destroyer USS Cole. NBC7's military reporter Bridget Naso has more from a sailor who survived the attack.

Terrorists on a small boat were able to get close enough to the guided-missile destroyer as it docked in the harbor of Yemen and detonated explosives, tearing a huge hole in the ship's side.

Twenty years later, the bombing remains a key moment in American history which foreshadowed the Sept. 11 attacks.

The U.S. Navy has implemented a number of changes and new safety precautions to keep ships safe as a result of what happened in Yemen 20 years ago.

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