(USA TODAY) Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the 26-year-old identified by police as the dead Boston bombing suspect, called his uncle Thursday night and asked for forgiveness, the uncle said.
Alvi Tsarnaev told The (Westchester County, N.Y.) Journal News that his nephew phoned him Thursday night for the first time in about two years.
The call came at 7 p.m., just a couple of hours before Tamerlan was shot dead.
"He said, 'I love you and forgive me,' " said Alvi Tsarnaev, who lives in Montgomery Village, Md.
"We were not talking for a long time because there were some problems," he said, without elaborating. "We were not happy with each other."
They spoke for about five minutes, he said. Tamerlan, who is Muslim, started out by saying, "Salam Aleikum," an Arabic greeting meaning "peace on you." He then praised his uncle for keeping up with his Muslim prayers.
They talked about family. He said Tamerlan has relatives in the United States and his father is in Russia.
"I told him I was praying to Allah, not drinking, not smoking, and he told me he was happy," he said. "He was asking, 'Did you pay your mortgage?' I told him I was trying to pay. I asked him what he was doing. He said, 'I fix cars, I got married, got a baby.' "
Police have identified Tamerlan Tsarnaev as the dead Boston bombing suspect. He was killed in a dramatic firefight with police in nearby Watertown, Mass.
A manhunt is underway for Tamerlan's brother, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19.
The brothers had been living together on Norfolk Street in Cambridge. Another uncle, Ruslan Tsarni, also of Montgomery Village, Md., told the Associated Press that the men lived together near Boston and have been in the United States for about a decade. They came from the Russian region near Chechnya, which has been plagued by an Islamist insurgency stemming from separatist wars.
Tamerlan attended Bunker Hill Community College as a part-time student for three semesters: Fall 2006, Spring 2007, and Fall 2008. He was in the Accounting program.
He was a competitive boxer for a club named Team Lowell and took a semester off from school to train for the National Golden Gloves competition in Salt Lake City, according to a photo essay titled "Will Box for Passport."
In 2010, Tamerlan beat Southern New England's Brian Daniels in the heavyweight title bout. Tsarnaev also received the prestigious Rocky Marciano Trophy given to the New England heavyweight champ, the Lowell Sun reported.
In the photo essay, Tamerlan says: "I don't have a single American friend, I don't understand them."
According to the website spotcrime.com, Tamerlan was arrested for domestic violence in July 2009 after assaulting his girlfriend.
Alvi Tsarnaev learned that his nephew was a suspect, shot dead, only from news coverage Friday morning.
"Killing innocent people, I cannot forgive that," he said. "It's crazy. I don't believe it now even. How can I forgive this?"
You may also like...
Attractive Convict: Woman behind mug shot meme sets the record straight
Dihydrogen Monoxide: April Fools hoax gets radio DJs suspended
Sinkhole Tragedy: Man sleeping in bed swallowed by sinkhole
That's NUTS! Squirrel causes massive outage at Tampa water plant
Out of this world mystery: "Pond circles" form over frozen pond
Faces of Meth: Before and After pictures
Sex tape scandal: Miss Delaware Teen USA resigns
Prostitute Roundup: 78 arrested in online sex sting
Upload error: Lawmakers consider restrictions on posting naked pics online
Neigh! Video shows man brutalizing, having sex with horse
Shake it: Harlem shake - 10 News style...
Sex blog: Tampa area school CFO busted over her dirty sex porn blog*warning, GRAPHIC*
BUSTED: Woman apologizes for flipping off judge *warning, GRAPHIC*
Nasty Nasty Dining: 10 of the nastiest restaurants in Tampa Bay in 2012
Cover Girl: Kate Upton back on the cover of Sports Illustrated
APP-tastic: Download the 10 News app for your iPad
Yowtch! Teen accidentally shoots off his penis, testicle
Bikini Photos: 2012 Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant
Money Mondays: How you can search for unclaimed cash
Sex Offender Mugshots: Look up Florida Sex Offenders here
Bikinis, mud, trucks: The Redneck Yacht Club
Naughty Schoolgirls: Naughty schoolgirl night at Tampa club pictures
Outrageous mug shot galleries...
Strange: Some of the most unusual mug shots we've seen
Notorious Women: Bad girls behind bars
Teachers: Teacher arrest mugshots
Celebrities: The rich and famous have their own booking photos
Jaw droppers: Open mouth mug shots
Laughers: What's so funny mug shots
Prostitutes: Prostitute mug shots
Athletes: Professional athlete mug shots
Porn arrests: Child porn arrest mug shots
Local Mugs: Hillsborough County Mug shots
More unusual mug shots and galleries: 10 News slideshows and galleries
Natalie DiBlasio, USA TODAY and Shawn Cohen, The (Westchester County, N.Y.) Journal News