People in the Lawrenceville area expressed relief at news that Osama bin Laden was killed Sunday by a group of highly trained Navy S.E.A.L.s. But some also cautioned that this is no time for America to let its guard down.
"I am elated and very happy that this has finally come into fruition. I am glad that his death will save taxpayers’ dollars by not having to put him on trial,” said Cheri Pizarro, wife of National Guard U.S. Army Infantry Specialist Frank Pizarro.
Pizarro said her husband, now in Mississippi, will be deployed for his second tour of duty in Afghanistan in three weeks.
“When I told Frank this morning what had happened, he too was so happy," Pizarro said. "My husband joined the armed services because of what happened on 9/11. As an immigrant who has become a citizen of the United States, after the 9/11 he was inspired to serve for the love of his country."
President Obama confirmed bin Laden’s death in a statement Sunday night. Acting on months of surveillance of a known al-Qaeda courier, the U.S. military raided a compound located in an affluent section of a Pakistani town two hours outside of Islamabad.
Many Americans believe that the United States and its allies must stay vigilant in destroying the remaining members of al-Qaeda. Some are enjoying the severing of the head, with a cautious eye on the body that might sprout a new head.
“The worst thing we can do is act like this is over," said Lance Corporal Joshua Musser, a retired Gulf War Veteran and Lawrenceville resident. "I believe we will see an increase in terrorist plots and activities, as some among al-Qaeda will try to take bin Laden’s place.”
Musser was medically discharged shortly after suffering a traumatic brain injury while serving in Iraq and from post traumatic stress disorder in 2006.
“The U.S. needs to stay strong as these terrorist groups break up and eventually fall apart," Musser said. "We need to keep the momentum going in removing these types of leaders to make sure that it (the war in Afghanistan) ends properly instead of by just pulling everyone out.”