On 21 December 1988, thirty-five Syracuse University students returning to the United States after a semester studying abroad in London and Europe lost their lives when a terrorist bomb exploded aboard Pan Am Flight 103 in the skies over Lockerbie, Scotland. The event forever rewrote the small village’s identity and reputation – as well as Syracuse’s.
There are many ways to respond to terrorism and remember trauma. Out of the Pan Am horror, Syracuse and Lockerbie have grown a relationship based on community healing and cultural exchange. In the years since the bombing, Syracuse has maintained strong connections with many of the families who lost loved ones, as well as the Scottish first responders. Today, the Lockerbie Trust ensures an ongoing relationship between Syracuse and Scotland: Two graduates of Lockerbie Academy are awarded a scholarship to study at Syracuse’s home campus in New York each year, where they serve as ambassadors between the two communities. Every year since 1990, thirty-five students have been named Remembrance Scholars as a living memorial of the Syracuse student victims. Being named a Remembrance Scholar is one of the most prestigious honors the University bestows.
Our ongoing relationship with the town of Lockerbie is celebrated in “Forward Lockerbie”, an original photo montage framed and featured in the Faraday Commons at Syracuse London’s campus.