Widow of veteran returns to Long Island with daughter this Memorial Day

MANORVILLE, New York (WABC) -- On this Memorial Day, a young family is continuing to deal with a devastating loss.

Memorial Day will never be the same for 5-year-old Liliana Bonacasa and her mother Deborah.

"She's starting to understand now. Not seeing him. Not being able to talk to him like we usually do," Deborah said. "In her heart she's very proud; she's willing to tell anyone who will listen about her dad."

Her dad was Staff Sergeant Louis Bonacasa.

He was a family man, just as proud of being a dad as he was of serving our country.
Last December, just four days before Christmas, a suicide bomber killed him and five other soldiers in Afghanistan.

It's been overwhelming but in a good way too because we've been receiving a lot of support from family and friends," Deborah said.

Bonacasa has been living in California with Liliana. Next week she'll move into a new home on Long Island made possible by a group which helps the families of veterans. She says she's happy it's close to Calverton National Cemetery so she can visit her husband whenever she wants.

"I miss him a lot. I try to be strong for Lily and for my family," Liliana said.

She has one request for all of us; that we not forget people like her husband who gave their lives for our freedom.
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