Son of terrorist victim was surprised

July 2, 2004 at 11:25 AM

, Fla., July 2 (UPI) -- A Florida man, the son of the Lockheed Martin engineer beheaded in Saudi Arabia, said he had been warned but was still surprised when it happened.

"They told us not to get our hopes up, but I really thought they'd find him," said Paul Marshall Johnson III, who has returned to his home in Port St. John, Fla.

His father, Paul Marshall Johnson Jr., 49, was kidnapped June 12 by al-Qaida terrorists. His son, who had been waiting for word at a relative's home in New Jersey, was notified June 18 his father had been beheaded.

"It still doesn't seem real. I need for things to get normal," he told the Orlando Sentinel in his first interview since the slaying.

"I don't want to be asked 1,000 questions. I just want to do my job and live my life," the construction worker said in the interview published Friday.

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