LONDON: UK clothing retailer Next has removed a Pan Am-themed Christmas jumper from sale after offending families whose relatives were killed in the 1988 Lockerbie bombing, Metro newspaper reported on Monday.
Dec. 21 will mark 35 years since Pam Am Flight 103 was destroyed over the Scottish town of Lockerbie by a bomb on board, killing all 259 people on board and 11 on the ground.
Next was criticized over the jumper’s design in an online petition that was signed by hundreds of people.
Comments on the change.org petition described the jumper as “offensive and disrespectful,” “disgusting” and “absolutely shocking.”
Phil Geddes, a Lockerbie resident who launched the petition, said: “As a resident of the town at the time of the Lockerbie bombing, an event that has left an indelible mark on the lives of many hundreds of people, this item, in its design or message, is offensive and disrespectful to those affected by this tragic event.
“The pain and trauma it caused are still felt today by countless individuals around the world. To see a product that makes light of such a tragedy or uses it for commercial gain is not only insensitive, but also deeply hurtful.”
Signatories of the petition spoke of their personal connections to the bombing. One commenter, Shona, said: “I worked at the local hospital the night of the Lockerbie disaster and it’s as fresh in my mind 35 years later as it was back then. This jumper needs to be taken off the market immediately.”
Another Lockerbie resident, Stephanie, said: “I lost a friend on Flight 103. This is beyond distasteful.”