U.S. holds photos of slain bin Laden, weighs release

U.S. officials are pondering whether to release the graphic photos of a dead Osama bin Laden they say show a precision kill shot above his left eye. And there's also video of the al-Qaida leader's swift burial at sea.

On our NewsChannel 15's Facebook page, while the comments have been mixed, they've weighed in favor of releasing the images.

Jason Hopkins wrote, "pics or it didn't happen."

Amanda Todd wrote, "I am not saying we need pics, but I think we should have some sort of proof, if there was another way. I really don't want my 13 year old seeing a man with half his head missing or something of that nature."

Lisa Lanier wrote, "Apparently, we've become a nation of barbarians, so bring on the gruesome. Even if it could put us in further danger from retaliating terrorists."

Brenda Wicker Bethea wrote, "9-11 was gruesome. I was subjected to that. I want to see the pics."

While U.S. officials want to debunk the mythology already building that bin Laden is somehow still alive, they're trying to figure out how to avoid inflaming Islamic sentiment while offering proof of Osama bin Laden's death.

NewsChannel 15 spoke with several people including a Gold Star mother in the Pee Dee whose son was one of the first South Carolinians killed in the War on Terror eight years ago. Theresa Hicks, 66, of Pageland believes that the world's number one terrorist is gone and buried at sea.

However, South Carolina's U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham says he thinks photos should be released to clear any doubt others may have.

Officials want to debunk the type of mythology already building that bin Laden is somehow still alive, but they don't want to inflame Islamic sentiment by showing images of bin Laden with part of his skull blown away by gunshots.

The photos also show that bin Laden was shot in the chest. U.S.forces delivered the shots near the end of a frenzied firefight in a high-security Pakistani compound, where officials say bin Laden had lived for six years.

Also found at the compound were 23 children, nine women, a son of bin Laden's , and the bin Laden courier who unwittingly led the U.S. to their target.

The sister of a New York city firefighter who died on 9-11 told NewsChannel 15 she wants to see fireworks to celebrate the death of the mastermind behind the 2001 terrorist attacks.

Meanwhile, President Barack Obama plans a trip to New York's ground zero Thursday, to remember the victims of 9/11 and to meet with their families.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.