President Obama broke the news to the world late Sunday night after American Special Forces killed the Al Qaeda leader during a raid in Pakistan.
The nearly decade-long manhunt ended in a dramatic raid that was months in the making.
Bin Laden met his end not in a cave, but a suburban mansion not far from Pakistan's capitol.
Impromptu celebrations erupted outside the White House, at Ground Zero in New York and in towns large and small across the country.
For families who lost loved ones on 9/11, it's a day of closure wrapped in complex emotions.
""Disbelief mingled with hope...I had despaired that this day would ever come," said Alice Hoagland, whose son perished on Flight 93 on September 11th.
U.S. Intelligence received a break last August.
President Obama gave the attack order Friday, and early Monday morning in Pakistan, U.S. Special Forces moved in, one helicopter making a hard landing as teams came under heavy fire before shooting Bin Laden and recovering his body.
It took less than 40 minutes.
"A small team of Americans carried out the operation with extraordinary courage and capability," Mr. Obama explained. "After a fire fight, they killed Osama bin Laden and took custody of his body."
A violent end to one of the most extraordinary manhunts in history.
Bin Laden's body was buried at sea.
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