Wednesday, September 09, 2015

I love Fall, love baseball playoffs and football. None of that matters this week, the few days before the worst day.  I'm sorry to say that I haven't added a new tribute, I'll do better in the coming year.  Please take some time reading about the 2,996 either on this blog or at Project 2,996.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Antonio Jesus Montoya 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Antonio Montoya Antonio was a passenger on American Airlines Flight 11 on 9/11/01. He came to the United States with his wife and son 20 years ago, and they had since had two daughters. Antonio worked at the Boston Harbor Hotel for 12 years. Mass was said for him by the friends that he worked with. From his son, "There's never been a (Dec.) 31st that we've been separate. He always wanted the family to be together that day and Christmas," said Montoya's son, Jorge. "Wherever he was, he would always come home. It's something we bring from Colombia. All the family should be together to pray to God for the New Year. I know that's going to be hard for my mother and for us."

Here are some of the message that I found on that have been left for him:

Antonio Montoya was one of the kindest people at The Boston Harbor Hotel. I remember his wonderful attitude and infectious smile. I did not know him well, but I will remember him my entire life.
Mark Schwindenhammer,
Chicago, Illinois

To The entire Montoya family, The world will always remember Antonio, our work continues since that day to ensure he is never forgotten. I hope you will contact me so we can speak about our work and you and the family will see how we work to preserve Antonio's beautiful memory, life and legacy. His sacrifice will never be forgotten
Jeannie Ammermann

Antonio, I love you. The worst day of my life began when Cathy told me you were no longer with us. I couldn't believe it... I still can't. My throat tightens up just thinking about many emotions still locked up inside. Your spirit, however, lives on. I can feel you watching over us sometimes. You remain in my prayers. You will never be forgotten.
East Boston, Massachusetts

I had the pleasure of working with Antonio over the past 11 years and want you to know that he is deeply missed. Please know that my prayers and thoughts are with your family.
Paige Davies,
Boston, Massachusetts

Saturday, February 01, 2014

Richard Ross 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Richard Ross.  He was 58 years old on 9/11/01, he was a passenger on American Flight 11.  He was the founder and CEO of the Ross Group in Massachusetts.  He lived with his wife, Judi, he coached his son's baseball team and he started a foundation, Brain Tumor Society after his daughter was diagnosed with having a brain tumor.  The foundation provided support and information.  A great quote from his daughter about Judi, his wife and her mother; "she misses him three times every second".... nice to have had someone like that in your life.  I'm sorry.
Below are some of the messages and memories sent to Richard and his family, from
Richard you are missed ... To a wonderful friend, father and model .
Mark Frey, Los Angeles, California
To Abigail, Alison, Franklin and Judy, it has been 10 years and in some ways it seems like yesterday, while in others a lifetime ago. I have kept Richard's obituary and picture in my desk for 10 years and on occasion take it out to see. I loved your father for how he lived his life and for what he shared with the rest of us who he touched during that time. I have now been a father three times in the last 5 years, and we have two lovely girls and one other who is not with us. But what I learned from Richard has guided me to be the best father I can be and I think he would be pleased by that more than anything else. He was a man of many talents but what survives his shortened life is that love and devotion, sincerity and selflessness that guided his principles and family values. I think of him and all of you very often. I believe he is watching over you and is smiling at who you are and what you have become. You are all in my prayers always.
Brian Bogosian, San Francisco, California
I think of Richard Ross often, especially around this time of year. I worked as his Executive Assistant at The Ross Group. He had such a contagious smile and was always so upbeat and positive. He was very loyal and he cherished his family more than anything. I also think of them and wonder how they are doing. They equally adored him. Peace and love to all on this 10th Anniversary. I know Richard is missed by so many.
Janine Dolan, Massachusetts
My belated condolences to the Ross Family. I have not seen Dickey in almost 40 years when I shared an apartment in Brighton, Mass with my roommates. He was our friend and came to some of our parties. I came from Hull and also remember seeing him at the Beach when we were teenagers. He was such a wonderful fun loving young man and so handsome. We all drifted apart and then sometime later we heard that he married. I think of the wonderful young man quite often since that tragic day this year. I never did see him in all those years. The thing that makes his passing even more strange for me is that my husband's X-wife lived in the same apartment building with Atta. When I read about the wonderful man he became and his accomplishments and you, his loving family I was very proud to think that I once touched the life of this wonderful human being that was taken much too soon. I will always remember Dickey. 
With deepest sympathy,
Sheila Stillman-DeRuzza   Margate, Florida
To the family of Richard Ross,
The first big shock came when I heard an explosion after a low flying airplane went over my building. The second big shock came three months later when I found out my old pal Dickie, was on that aircraft.
We hung out together, back in the late fifties. We double dated often. He was a handsome, charming young man who possessed social graces beyond his years. I am sorry I lost contact with him, but am very pleased to read how he shared his life with you. I hope the warmth of his personality will live forever through you.

Stanley (Simmy) Patz, New York , New York

Philip Rosenzweig 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Philip Rosenzweig.  He was a passenger on American, Flight 11 on 9/11, he was 47 years old.  The first thing I read about him said; "you can count on him".   He was Vice President at Sun Mircosystems.  He lived is Acton Massachusetts with his wife Lauren and two sons; Jeremy and Max.
He drove a beloved silver Porsche and had joined a club for Porsche owners.  
As always, the best but hardest part of putting together these tributes is reading the messages and memories loved ones and strangers have left to and for him.  Hard because the messages are heartbreaking.  Here are some of them from the site.  Legacy will have these tributes up, for free, forever.  Much appreciated Legacy.
August 30, 2003
Jeremy Rosenzweig, Acton, Massachusetts

I worked with Phil at Sun and spent a lot of time with him. My last time with him was over a beer and meal in Palo Alto in California with several of his friends and colleagues. The meal ts memorable for the non- stop laughter over references (many from Phil) over the foibles of the higher ups at Sun. At one point Phil couldn't stop laughing and bent over laughed until he was in pain. It was a joyous night and I choose to remember Phil laughing so hard it hurt. As the Russians sing at their service of remembrance, "Memory Eternal"
Michael Seridan
Dearest Phil.
Always in my memory and heart.
All of my love , your aunt Karen
You were a friend of my dad Lou from Sun. He will never forget you and now I won't either. Hoping you're at peace.
Courtney Griggs, Chandler, Arizona
Phil and I were great friends growing up and I spent a lot of time at Phil's house with his Dad and his stepmom and his brother. We maintained that friendship through marriage. We were car guys and after losing touch briefly, Phil contacted me when he was buying his Porsche. We started up again like we had just seen each other.
I think today would have been Phil's 53rd birthday and if he were here we would probably be on the phone talking cars and family.   I was there immediately after the tragedy attending Jeremy's bar mitzvah and hanging out with Max and Lauren. I couldn't believe how blessed he was and if he were here today I am sure he would be talking about his wonderful family. Rest in peace old friend - we all miss you.
There is not a day that goes by that I dont see Uncle Phil's picture in my front entrance of the house and I think that I was blessed to have had him as a Uncle and that I have you for family. I love you all so very much and hope you know that forever & ever!
Helena Castilla,  Lake Worth, Florida

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


Project 2,996 is where you can find all of the tributes.

Here it is again; 9/11. 
Twelve years.
I haven't forgotten them.  

Much love for NY, Shanksville, PA and The Pentagon.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Charles Droz 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Charles Droz.  Charles was 52 years old on 9/11, he was a a passenger on American Airlines Flight 77. 
Charles Droz was VP of software development for EM Solutions Inc.  He had spent 20 years in the Navy and was a Lt. Commander, and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Grove City College, and a Masters of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the Naval Postgraduate School.   
Clearly he was a very smart and successful guy.  He is survived by his wife Cindy, his daughter Shannon, his mother and sister.
Charles, or Chuck as he was called was buried at Arlington National Cemetery, with full honors.
As always, I have relied on, along with a few other spots online to share memories and messages from loved ones, friends and even strangers.... always heartbreaking but it's important to remember them.  Here are some of the messages...
11 years later, and you are still in our hearts.
He was one of a kind," said Robert Brown, vice president of administration for EM Solutions. It's going to be difficult to find someone with his expertise. He's almost irreplaceable.
Hi, I am in 10th grade at Lakeview Fort-Oglethorpe High School and on this September 11th, we held a commemoration of all the victims of that day. Each cheerleader, football player and service club member was handed a card and on 9-11 at the times that the planes hit, a teacher would read over the intercom, the time, the fight that went down, and how many victims, at that time, if we had a card with a person on that flight, we would read their name, age, location, and profession. I just wanted you to know that i had Charles' name, and i am so sorry about your loss, i'm sure he was a wonderful man. God Bless you, Melissa
Chuck was a friend and colleague whose memory lives on. His friendship and professional contributions will be never be forgotten. So many lives were significantly blessed by his life- mine especially.
Chuck was a good man. He was a devoted husband to my sister and a loving father to my niece. I will never forget his warmth, his contagious sense of humor, his Christian acts of kindness, and his heartfelt interest in all of the activities of his nieces and nephews. He listened when people spoke and was never judgmental. Chuck was also highly intelligent ... but he never flaunted it. He had the ability to make anyone in his presence feel comfortable. I miss him. He was more than my brother-in-law ... he was my friend. Dianne Maravich

Friday, January 11, 2013

Christopher Zarba 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Christopher Zarba.  He was 47 years old on 9/11, he was a passenger on American Airlines Flight 11.  He was a talented pianist and French horn player who performed with local symphonies in his free time.  Christopher Zarba came from a musical family.  He worked as a software engineer for a communications firm but music also played a significant role in his life.  His wife Sheila was a fellow horn player, they had a son.  He loved his son and had been making a video to show to his son when he was older.  His family has edited it and shared it on youtube.  A great man and father.

At left is a shot of a memorial with Chris's name on the right.  The person that took the picture posted it on Legacy with the message below.  Thank you for sharing it: Earlier this year, I visited the 9/11 Memorial in Jerusalem, Israel. It is entitled: A Reminder of Shared Loss and a Call for Peace Among Nations. This memorial, dedicated by the Blank family of NYC, was one of the first major international memorials to mark the tragedy and honor the memory of its victims. The bronze sculpture depicts a waving American flag which evolves into a memorial flame. It is 30 feet high and rests on a base of gray granite, part of which came from the original Twin Towers of the World Trade Center destroyed in the mammoth airliner attack on September 11, 2001. The sculpture is surrounded by a circular, crater-like plaza and reflection area, tiled in stone, where the names of every victim of the attack (nearly 3,000) are etched in stone. There I found Chris’ name and would like to share that photo with the community here. Rina
Below are some of the other messages and memories that have been left for him on  Something that I just learned about the Legacy, all of the 9/11 tributes will be on their site for free, forever.
Christopher R. Zarba Jr. was born in East Boston, MA and lived on Leyden St. He attended St. Lazarus School and Boston Latin. Graduated from Tufts College and Lowell State College. He was a Software Engineer. He was an accomplished musician playing french horn, piano and organ. He leaves wife Sheila, a son Christopher a brother Joseph and a father Christopher. He was a highly respected and dearly loved.
Franklin Zarba
To the Zarba Family: I was blessed to have played with Chris in the Norton Singers and Chaminade Pit Orchestra and in a lovely woodwind quintet that used to rehearse in the Brannan Flute Factory in Woburn. My thoughts were with you all yesterday, 10 years and the memories of how great Chris was will always be with us. Fondly, Katherine Williams McWilliams, Bassoonist
Thinking of you on this day of observance of the worst of humankind. With love and God Bless
You at the time, Granite street neighbors.  Weir family.
Gone but not forgotten. As we approach the tenth commemoration of that sunny Tuesday morning when Christopher met his fellow musicians of the heavenly orchestra, we smile at memories of him and think warmly of the loving family members left behind. Someday we will be reunited and the brass players from Tufts will once again offer our serenades in splendid harmony.  David Hastings
I still think of Chris often, especially when I hear music that we played together with the TSO. I remember exchanging stories about our baby boys and proud he was of Chris. It is happy day today to know that Osama bin Laden is gone.  Judy Schmitz
Chris and I worked together many years ago at Blue Cross/Blue Shield. We often went to Chinatown for Dim Sum at lunch. One day he took a dish of dark gnarled little bits off of the server's tray. I asked what it was and as he put the dish on our table, committing us, the waiter cheerfully replied, "Chicken feet." It became our joke, drawing chicken feet on scraps of paper and tossing them over the cubicle wall. Then I moved to Texas and we wrote for awhile before losing touch. I was excited to look him up when we moved back, but he was gone. And yes, Chris ate those chicken feet at the restaurant that day, I just couldn't.
Sarah Michael
It's been seven years, and I am still saddened by Chris's death. Those who worked with Chris at Concord were devastated. I just want to assure Chris's family that he is not forgotten. Matt Baddeley
My Dear Nephew Christopher: Five years, and still I find my conversations with you are continuing - there is no need for words, sometimes they come and sometimes they fail me. But, we are still here knowing that you have something to do with every good thing that happens in our lives. You were always quiet, but you were always visible, now you are more verbal and visible...funny, but you were always full of surprises. We love you. Your Dad and brother reflect you more and more and a new baby girl is coming for your brother Joe and Helen - I tell them it is your gift of love. God Keep you safe for us. Kisses and Hugs, Aunt Rina
 I worked with Chris at Data General and had kept in touch with him after that.
The loss of Chris is a loss for all of us. A very talented person, very intelligent, very patient, and yet very modest, Chris always had time for people and always shared his smile. What I remember most about Chris was how the birth of his son Christopher impacted him. Chris adored his son and valued every second they could spend together. While he will now grow up without his father, Christopher should know just how much his father loved him. Chris' values were a model for all of us. We are all worse off now that Chris is gone.
David Lawler

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

This day

2,996 people. 
343 Firefighters. 
60 Officers. 
Men, women, and kids.
 Pregnant women.
 Partners, married, engaged, dating, single.


Monday, September 10, 2012

Melissa Harrington Hughes 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Melissa Harrington Hughes.  She was 31 years old on 9/11/01.  She was attending a breakfast on 9/11/01 in the WTC.  Melissa was the director of business development for the Slam Dunk Networks in Redwood City, Calif. 
From her father, "She loved the opera, loved to travel, loved a bottle of good wine. And professional football. Her favorite team was the Green Bay Packers.  She was newly married, her husband was in California. 
Melissa leaves her husband, Sean S. Hughes; her father and mother, Robert J. and Beverly A. (Rzeszutek) Harrington of West Springfield, MA; her brother, Michael J. Harrington of Somerville, MA; her maternal grandmother, Bertha (Gwozdz) Rzeszutek of Chicopee, MA. She was predeceased by her paternal grandparents, James and Louise (Santolini) Harrington; and her maternal grandfather, Michael Rzeszutek.
The Junior League of San Francisco and her husband Sean Hughes created the Melissa Harrington Hughes 9/11 Memorial Fund and established the Melissa Harrington Hughes Leadership Award, (which recognizes a JLSF active member who is a new and upcoming leader within the organization).
Melissa was able to speak to her father on that day and left a message for her husband, telling him how much she loved him.  The family allowed the messages to be heard by the public and they are heartbreaking.  I'm so very sorry for them.  I can only hope that as years have gone by they have found some happiness and peace.
Here are some of the messages left to her, from
I worked with Sean, and met Melissa at a Corp function in SF a few weeks before 9-11. She impacted me- I remember a very bright, funny vivacious beautiful person! Her VM message haunts me to this day.
Much love and positive energy for you and your family -- 10 years after .....Pete Stanger
Bob, Beverly & Michael,
Although we are a long distance from home in retirement, Cyndi and I wanted you to know that as always we think of you on this day. Our thoughts and prayers are with you today as we all remember Melissa.
Mitch & Cyndi Ogulewicz
Melissa, I just found out today what your name was. I remember you, thru your husband Sean. I will never forget that message you left him. God Bless. J. Ohio
Sean, What a pleasure to have had the opportunity to be friends of Melissa while in SF. As the anniversary of her death sadly approaches, I will choose to celebrate her life. My heart is happy and aches a little at the same time when I think back to your first days of courtship. Your goofy smiles when in each other's presence used to floor me! The connection was SO obvious-and genuine. I'm so thrilled that you two were married, things were right with the world and all that was meant to be happened for you both when she was here. All of us should be so blessed to share such a perfect love in life and death. Good luck to you, Sean. And know that someone is better off for knowing her and you two together. I will continue to draw inspiration from her ambition, sense of humor and the fact that soul mates do exist.-Patricia Dolphin
God Bless our Pi Phi sister..Jennifer
Sending our prayers and love to Sean during this time of great sorrow...and also to Melissa's parents and siblings. To Uncle Jimmy and Aunt Artella Shannon and Heather please accept my sincerest condolences and give Sean a hug for me and should you need anything please don't hesitate to call. I love you all and miss you guys!!
Ken, Chris, Chelsea & Channing Hogue

If you wish to contribute to the memorial fund set up in her name, please follow this link:

Jacqueline Norton 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Jacqueline Norton. She was 61 years old on 9/11/01.  She was a passenger on American Airlines Flight 11.  She was flying to California with her husband,  Robert.  Robert's tribute can be found here...

They lived in Lubec, Maine.  The couple was flying to Los Angeles to attend the wedding of Jackie Norton’s son.  Residents of Lubec established a memorial garden for the couple next to the Lubec Congregational Christian Church, which the Nortons attended.  Selectman JoAnne Case, who knew the Nortons from church, said they were exceptionally nice people.
Both were well loved and are missed...  here are some messages and memories that I have taken from
I am looking at every name and face on the CNN memorial website. This beautiful couple stood out. I am sure you are together on the other side, watching over your loved ones. I pray for the family left behind.
Mary Lou Hubisz
Jackie will always be remembered as the best part of Lubec. The first time we met I was treated like a Long Lost Friend...never a stranger. Thank you for that and I miss you, Roger Erickson
Jackie will be greatly missed in our community. I considered her one of my best friends. I wish to express my sadness and sympathy to her family. She will not be forgotten. May God bless our country and lead us forward.  Norma Leighton

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Barbara Keating 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Barbara Keating.  Barbara was 72 years old on 9/11/01.  She was a passenger on American Airlines Flight 11, heading back to California after visiting with her family.  
Having been a widow for 20 years, she moved from Cape Code to California, she survived two fights with breast cancer, had five children and worked for 25 years serving people like the Boys and Girls Club... wow, what a strong person and a real fighter.  In California she drove a red convertible and attended church every day. 

From what I have read of her, Barbara Keating a happy, full life, but still, she was taken too soon and it's so unfair.  I'm so sorry that her loved ones lost her, she was loved and no doubt that she is missed.  Here are some messages and memories left for her...

Welcome Keatings to NYC for 10 year anniversary! You haven't changed a bit.
Barbara would be so proud of the grandchildren. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree!
Brian Fitzgerald
In loving memory of a wonderful person. We will love you and miss you always. Tom F
Remembering you on this day and always.
Barbara you sound like a great person let god treat you well you deserve it.  New York

Paul Friedman 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Paul Friedman.  He was 45 years old on 9/11/01.  Paul was married and had a young son.  He clearly was a really smart guy, having degrees in Psychology, Engineering and Business.  He was a Management Consultant for Emergence Consulting in Lincoln, Mass.  He was a passenger on American Flight 11 on 9/11, flying to L.A. for work.
"He was the happiest he had ever been in his life," his sister said. 

What a sad loss for his family and friends.  To be at a place in your life when you are happy, fulfilled and loved then to just be gone.  I'm very sorry that he was taken from you.  Here are some of the messages and memories left for Paul and the people that loved him... as I've written many times on this journal, my favorite but most heartbreaking messages are the ones left for the person, in this case for Paul.

I cannot believe it has already been ten years since you were taken from your loved ones. It seems like yesterday I watched the tragedy take place on TV..and had no idea my friend was on one of those planes.
I just finished a book titled "Memories" by a lady who lost her husband on 9/11. I hope you have left pennies or whatever around so your loved ones know you are watching over them and you are never too far away.
Rest in peace my friend.
linda koeb
After many years, I emailed Audrey last night after learning of the victory for humanity. When you were shockingly taken from us, an 8 month old baby was also left behind. Rocky is now a 10 year old boy. When his class said the 'Pledge of Allegiance' this morning, I'm sure it held an extra special meaning for him, with thoughts of his Dad. America, your family and friends have not forgotten you. 
Michael Fetcho
May 1, 2011 - Justice has prevailed. Rest in peace my friend! Your friend from Warner Music Group, Mandy
I met Paul when I worked in NY on Genesis with Amex. Paul quickly became one of my best friends there and was one of the kindest and brightest people I have ever met. Finally after 5 years I am able to sign this book. My heart goes out to his family..he was indeed a treasure..and I am thankful to have known him and to have been able to call him my friend.
linda griffin-koebI knew Paul at NYU through our common friend Joe Woolf. He was a wonderful man with an infectious laugh that I'll always remember from happy, happier, days.
Rob Kaplan 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Sgt. Mark Renninger
Officer Tina Griswold
Officer Ronald Owens
Officer Greg Richards

Two years ago today a horrible event happened, so horrible that it is hard to wrap my brain around it.  Much love to Lakewood PD, and their friends and family.  My blue light is still up.  They have started a food drive for their community, anyone that can participate, please do:

WHAT: Fallen Officers Food Drive.
WHEN: Tuesday through Monday.
WHERE: Donations will be accepted Tuesday from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. at Lakewood Police Department, 9401 Lakewood Drive S.W. Donations will be accepted through Monday at all Pierce County Forza locations; all Pierce County Library branches; Lakewood Ace Hardware, 8123 Steilacoom Blvd. S.W.; and Rusty’s Auto and Truck Repair, 19912 Meridian Ave. E., Graham.
ALSO AVAILABLE: Food Drive T-shirts will be sold at the Lakewood Police Department on Tuesday. Each shirt costs $15. The proceeds will go to the Emergency Food Network.

Sunday, September 11, 2011


We will not waver; we will not tire; we will not falter; and we will not fail." - George W. Bush 10/7/2001.  I am proud to be an American.  I have written these 9/11 tributes for Project 2,996,  as my way of paying respect to my fellow Americans.  All of them made me cry, many pissed me off - these people should still be here.  It was incredibly moving to read personal messages to loved ones.... I miss you...Happy Birthday...I bought a new house....I had a baby...I think of you everyday...please come back.
The most heartwretching message I saw was from a son to his FDNY father, it could have been on every single one of them: I would give anything to have you back.  
The ache for loved ones to return, I can't imagine... after 10 years the hurt is the same but we as Americans will continue to persevere.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Thelma Cuccinello 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Thelma Cuccinello.  She was 71 years old on 9/11/01.  What a great mother and grandmother.... she loved Christmas, her and her husband made many of the Christmas decorations that now decorate her daughters houses.  She had made quilts for all 10 of her grandchildren, I'm sure they are cherished.  She had recently taken to playing golf.  Thelma was a passenger on American Airlines Flight 11.  I know how deeply she is loved and missed, 10 years later, it hurts the same. I'm so sorry you lost your mother, grandmother, sister and friend.  No one deserved this, certainly not this loving woman.  Here are some of the messages left for Thelma and her family from
Thinking of your daughters today, Thelma. My mom Mary still tears up when she speaks of you-she misses your laughter and friendship so much. And you will always be remembered. Jeanne Collins

This year I am moved and able to pay tribute...We lived just down the street from Thelma and "Cooch"...When our daughter was born, Thelma was the first non-family member to babysit while we went to an appt...Special, kind and beyond caring...Her legacy to her family. Lisa Giles, Lakeland, Florida
Thelma, you were on your way to visit your sister, Grace, who loved you so much and never was quite the same after your death. Grace passed away today, 12-24-06, at 11:45am PST. You are both with the Lord today, in Heaven. May God Bless you and your family and your generation. Trent Benedettti,
Don't think that we have forgotten, dear lady. We will never forget, and on the 9th Anniversary of that hellish day, we will say more prayers for your family, because I am sure they still miss you very much. Joyce Romano, Los Angeles, California
We have a quilt that Thelma made for my daughter Kerri when she was born on May 8, 1995. It was hanging on her bedroom wall that terrible day. She was a friend of my mother-in-law's and attended our wedding. A genuine sweetie-pie of a lady. Peace Claude Maddox, Acton, Massachusetts
Cheryl, Laurie and Maria,
My thoughts are with you, your families and your Mom. I keep warm thoughts of "Mrs. Cuccinello" with me always. My childhood memories will always be with me, these memories include your Mom who will always be my next door neighbor! Mribeth and Scott
Maribeth (Meaney) Darrow, Chelmsford, Massachusetts

Neilie Anne Heffernan Casey 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Neilie Anne Heffernan Casey.  Neilie was
32 years old on 9/11/01.  She was a Planning Manager for TJX.  She was married and had a 6 month old baby girl.  Neilie and her husband met as high school Freshman.  Had a family and many friends that loved her.  She was a giving and lovely person that had a smile, the one that found the good in people in everything she did, will warm them and sustain them. That smile, they said, radiated hope.  As you can see from the picture, her smile was stunning.  Neilie was a passenger on American Airlines Flight 11. 

At Neilie’s memorial mass, which was held just after 9/11, Mr. Casey gave each person in the church a self-addressed envelope to his and Neilie's daughter Riley and invited them to share memories or anecdotes they had of Neilie.  “We probably have about 300 of those, and we haven’t opened them yet,” Casey said. “We will when the time is right. I don’t know when that is, but we’ll know.”

Her husband wrote this about his extraordinary wife... what an incredible human being.  I'm so sorry she is gone....

In addition, here are some of the messages and memories left for Neilie over the past 10 years, from
Neilie, ten years is a blink of the eye in God's time. I can still see your bright smile and hear your cheerful voice, tears still come but now because of the thankfulness of having known you for a short time. You will never be forgotten and my heart goes out to your family. Andrea Martin, North Easton, Massachusetts
During a secondment from the UK, at Chadwicks in Boston many years ago, Neilie was my Mentor. I will never forget her warmth and enthusiasm.
I am sending love to her family and friends. God Bless you all. Tiffany Downer, London

As the 10 year anniversary of this tragedy approaches, you are all in my thoughts and prayers!! The video I've seen of the memorial are beautiful. I hope to one day be able to take my children there and let them find their cousin's name. I love you Aunt Anne and wish you peace and closure with this anniversary. Andrea Luces, Palm Bay, Florida

Hey Neilie,  Just talked to your Mom. We laugh and talk about you as if you were in the room. Your were a true joy to be around, with vivacious energy, and a smile as bright as the sun. Gone, but NOT forgotten!! Big Hug Peggy Hill, Rye Brook, New York

Thinking Neilie today, as I do every anniversary and finding hard to believe 8 years has passed. I think of Neilie often and I'm sure I will always think of her, not just on this sad date but other times throughout the year. I knew Neilie from Chadwick's. Happy and joyous are what come to mind when I think of her. Wishing her family peace and comfort today. We all continue to hold Neilie and her family in our thoughts and prayers.

My many tears today surprised me. Remembering you and that terrible day hurts. Time may heal but it does not make one forget. You touched so many hearts as has your beautiful daughter and we do remember. A former Chadwick's employee. Andrea Martin, North Easton, Massachusetts
It is the 6th anniversary of 9/11and I still cry for Neilie and her family. What a loss!!!! I get by thinking that perhaps I was lucky to have met someone not of this world, a true angel in disguise because she brought smiles and joy to everyone she encountered. Lucky I was to have met Neilie.
She was such an inspirational, uplifting, positive person and no matter how bad a day may have seemed to the average individual,Neilie would put it in perspective. My mantra is to live life as Neilie did... always tell those who are close to you that you love them. Say "hello handsome" to your husband now and then. Don't refuse a doughnut because you fear the pounds because you know what it is good and it makes you happy. When life gets you down just say oh well tomorrow will be better.
I miss you Neilie, you were so special!!! I hope you can make this world better by being up there and offering up your super sound advise to those who will listen. Xo Xo Lori Weeks, South Dartmouth, Massachusetts

Friday, September 09, 2011

Jeffery Coombs 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Jeff Coombs.  Jeff was 42 years old on 9/11/01.  He was a passenger on American Airlines Flight 11.  Wow.  Incredible family.  He loved the outdoors and loved spending time outdoors with friends and family.  He worked for Compaq and was able to spend a lot of time working from home.  His family has worked tirelessly since that awful day to help the lives of others through a foundation in his name.
I'm so sorry you lost your husband, father, brother, son and friend.  He sounds like one of the best of us.  Here are some memories and messages left to him from loved ones, from

well Jeff, Doug and I are getting ready to hit another mountain. We started doing these 67 peaks with you years ago and every mountain we climb brings us close to you. We still hear you behind us unwrapping the endless supply of candy bars and feel your presence standing beside every campfire. With only 7 mountains left it is bittersweet as the goal of finishing them all together was a strong bond between 3 brothers. You are so missed. Chuck

I participated in two of Jeff's Compaq projects early in the summer of 2001. Jeff impressed me with his skills and with his solid, reliable nature. He was not a serious, dry man; he carried a sense of joy and pleasure in his life ... particularly with his family. He enjoyed his family and his work ... and wanted others to do the same.  I am fortunate to have known Jeff ... however briefly ... and miss him still.Vaya con Dios ... Alan Thomas, Port Angeles, Washington
As I read these very kind messages, I wish I could reach out to everyone to say thanks. It is truly comforting to read what people have to say about Jeff and about that horrible day. I so appreciate everyones' prayers and compassionate messages. I wish I could say thank you to each of you individually, but I'm grateful to be able to do it through this site. Jeff was indeed a wonderful family man who loved his children so much. He was great at making people laugh, and kept our house a happy place. I, his kids, his family and my family miss him terribly. Thank you for helping his memory live on. Christie Coombs, Abington, Massachusetts
I was a Compaq employee who was working at the conference that Jeffrey was flying out to speak at. I have thought and prayed for him so many times, but never had the pleasure of meeting him. I want his family to know that the Compaq family will never forget him. Donna Fraley, Houston, Texas
Thinking of you and your family during this sad time. I have such fond memories of Jeff and and his wonderful sense of humor. Jean (Casey) Malinski, Carlsbad, California
Dear Coombs Family, I am a sixth grader and I go to a catholic school, I was given Mr.Coombs and to pray for. He sounds like a really kind person. I am sorry he was on one of the planes. I just wanted to let you know that my school and family is always praying for you. Caroline, Medford, New Jersey
My brothers and I (Peter and Mark Manzoni) went to high school with Jeff. We have memories of him coming over our house for dinner, joking around, and hanging out. I pray that his family finds peace and love in God. We will never forget! Diana Brady, Bellingham, Massachusetts
Jeff was to be one of a group of 10 people - some old friends and soon-to-be new friends - going to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon on September 29 for a week of backpacking, the same week he was to celebrate his wedding anniversary. I'm told that the Grand Canyon was one of his favorite places and he never missed an opportunity to go hiking or rafting there with his friends here in Arizona. The trip will go on, but Jeff's absence will echo like a raven's cry off of canyon walls. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family in Massachusetts. Ted Wiseman, Phoenix, Arizona

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Carrie Blagburn 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Carrie Blagburn.  Carrie was 48 years old on 9/11/01.  She lived in Temple Hills, Maryland and worked as civilian budget analyst with the U.S Army in the Pentagon.  She had been married for 23 years and had a son that is in the Army and a 16 year old daughter.
As always, the messages left to Carrie are heartbreaking.  She was a wife, a mother and a friend.  I'm so sorry.  Here are some of her messages left by family and friends on

The Day that god let you know that you were no longer needed on this earth and to be in his presence wasn't the best of days for my mom because not only was it her birthday, she lost a dear friend. You and my Mom Jenshel Marshall were co-workers for a long time before the pentagon. but may god bless your family and let prayers of strength and encouragement continue to come to your family. TaKea Marshall, Capital heights, Maryland
I MISS U GRANDMA. I LOVE U FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART. Levone Blagburn, Ft. Washington, Maryland
To the family of Carrie Blagburn,

I wish to express my deepest sympathy to your family, I have been and longtime working colleague of Carrie, her sister Althea, her mother Ms. Payne and also her sister-in-law Denise, when we were all employed at the Navy Annex in Arlington, VA. This is a hard a trying time, but trust in the lord and every thing will be just fine. Moanick Fenner, Suitland, Maryland
To the family and friends of Carrie, I pray for a healing of your hearts and that you will someday be able to accept and go on. Memories will then become precious and soothing instead of heartwrenching as they are now. I am certain she is with all the angels, singing with the heavenly hosts. God Bless You. Carrie will not be forgotten. Sheila Werland, Illinois
To the family of Carrie Blagburn. I pray strength for each and everyone of you. Today marks the anniversary of that tragic day. There's so much that have happened since that day in each and everyone of your lives. We don't know why our beloved Carrie was taken away from us but we do know that she is up in heaven with that beautiful smile of hers. I'm glad that I had a chance to know Carrie as a friend, pal, confidante, sister and also as my "twin"! Words can't express the sorrow but we all know that God has her in his bosom. God bless each and everyone of you and I pray that our paths will cross again someday! Love,  Georgia Atkins Williams, Washington, District of Columbia

Monday, August 29, 2011

William Weems 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to William Weems.  He was 46 years old on 9/11/01.  William was a freelance producer of TV commercials and was traveling to L.A.  He was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 175.  He was married and had a 7 year old daughter. 
"His life was really based on what he could do to enhance the lives of others," said friend Cynthia Gardner. "Most importantly his wife and daughter Zoe."

There's a saying that goes something like, "A measure of a man's worth can be taken by those who loved him"...... something to that affect.  Clearly William Weems worth was high as all the messages left for him are full of love from others.  Here are some of the those messages from
Bill, I was always struck by what a wonderful person you were when we worked together in the production business in Boston. You were a producer on one of my shoots and it was a great experience. And I remember the day I saw your name scroll across my TV. It filled me with rage and anger that someone as good as you could be taken in such a way. It still does. But your goodness will always win out over that event. It was an honor to know you. Chuck Koelsch, Providence, Rhode Island
Bill, I think of you every day, but more today--so kind and so thoughtful--and so missed in this world.
Laurie Everett
Thinking of you today, Weemsie... I will never forget you... miss you... Ann McKallagat, Massachusetts
May 02, 2011
I hope, in some way, today's news allows to have a little peace.
Dear Bill, There have been many times that I have thought of you and the work we did in were one of a kind... Tony Mariano
Bill, It's been nine years now, and seems like yeaterday. Can't imagine what you would be up to today, but no doubt putting smiles on many faces. Rest in Peace "Joneseee" it was you who were always PLUM. Dan Misko
Dear Lisa and Zoe, I still think of you and your husband and father from my days when I owned Videoscope in Marblehead. I hope time has somehow helped you to heal. Sincerely, Stan Rusnak
Stan Rusnak, Essex, Massachusetts
I did not William but his name jumped off the t.v. screen when I first saw it because it is a rare name and I first thought it was someone in my family. In a way you are as are all the victims but it was your name that connected you to me at first glance. Can it be seven years?? My thought s and prayers are with you and your family on this another 9/11, rest softly. Scott Weems, Reston, Virginia
Bill was a producer for about 10 spots I made and he and I were in constant contact for about four years in the late 90's. I counted him a one of my good friends in the profession and he was a bright light in my life and the lives of many of my friends. Funny, Smart and a hard worker who loved what he did. I think of him often and particularly today. I miss him and I offer my very best, my thoughts and prayers to Lisa, and his kids, family and friends. Todd Root, Hartford
Bill was my movie buddy. We must've seen 100 flicks together. I still glance over at the empty seat next to me sometimes and can't believe my friend is gone. I miss him terribly. Dan Lincoln,

Jane Simpkin 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Jane Simpkin.  Jane was 36 on 9/11/01.
She was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 175.  She worked for the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, but her plan was to become an entertainment lawyer.  The ASCAP has a website for Jane that has many of her friends comments on what she meant to them and how much she will be missed:

In addition I have borrowed these memories from Jane's mother that she has posted on  I'm so sorry you lost her.
God has you in his keeping.
I have you in my heart.
Love forever Mum XXX
~ Ann Simpkin, Wayland, Massachusetts
Every moment I love you more

Your kindness makes my spirit soar
Your wisdom persuades with tender sway
To reach beyond myself today
From "The Healing Light"
Love Forever MumXXX
~ Ann Simpkin, Wayland, Massachusetts
Softly the leaves of memory fall,

Gently I gather and treasure them all
Love forever MumXXX
~ Ann Simpkin, Wayland, Massachusetts
'Til the roses lose their petal's

'Til the heather has lost it's dew
'Til the end of time I will love you
With love for Easter Mum
~ Ann Simpkin, Wayland, Massachusetts March 28, 2011
Though life goes on without you it will never be the same.
Untill we meet again may God hold you in his hand's
With love on your Birthday Mum
~ Ann Simpkin, Wayland, Massachusetts January 05, 2011
What is lovely never dies
But passes into other lovingness
Star Dust,Sea Foam,
Flower or Winged Air
Thinking and missing you always.
I love you Mum
Trying to find the sunshine.

I miss you so much
~ Ann Simpkin, Wayland, Massachusetts
... and my favorite which can be said for all of the people of these tributes:  "They are not gone who live in the heart's they leave behind"  My Daughter My Friend
~ Ann Simpkin, Wayland, Massachusetts

Shawn M. Nassaney 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Shawn Nassaney.  Shawn was 25 years old on 9/11/01.  He was a passenger, along with his girlfriend Lynn Goodchild on United Airlines Flight 175.  He was a big Yankee fan.... I suppose I won't hold that against him.  Shawn and Lynn were traveling to Hawaii for a 4 day vacation before they both went for their M.B.A. degrees at Providence College.  Shawn was a Sales Manager for APC, a manufacturing company.  From the foundations website: Shawn was a special member of the APC family and we will sorely miss his enthusiasm, contributions, and constant smile. Upon news of his death, a scholarship fund was immediately created to ensure that Shawn's name lives forever and that he will continue to have a positive influence on many other future leaders.
Currently the Foundation makes gifts to the Shawn M. Nassaney Memorial Scholarship at Bryant University and to a similar fund established at St. Raphael’s Academy in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. From time to time, the Foundation’s Board of Directors will consider other worthwhile activities and programs that reflect Shawn’s character, leadership skills and personal interests.Information on the foundation can be found here:
Shawn has many heartfelt messages left for him.... here are a few of them from
I still think of the good you did for me at APC that day so many years ago. You were and always will be an angel Shawn. We all still miss you terribly. Suzanne Poitras, East Greenwich, Rhode Island
Shawn, I love you buddy and I miss you. I think about you everyday especially today 7/7, your birthday. I'll never forget the last of your birthdays we spent together, my bachelor party in Montreal. I cherish that whole weekend and cant believe just a couple short months later you were taken from us and only one month before my wedding. It's been tough, but it's getting a little easier. You were a great friend and still are to me. I love you man and I'll keep trying to live as you did, to the fullest. Happy Birthday. Jason Silva, Pawtucket, Rhode Island
I don't know what to say it has been years since we went to school together at Saint Teresa's . I remember you as such a kind friendly funny person . The one who never picked on anyone ... The one who liked to make people laugh . When I watched the news and saw your name listed I felt such a sadness like I still knew you . Like it was yesterday we were in 5th grade together ... I cried ....For you for your family and all other families that lost so much that awful day . I am glad to have known you . You will always be remembered by all who ever met you such a good soul such a kindhearted soul. Sue, Pawtucket, Rhode Island
I got to know Shawn during his time in Australia and we spent countless hours working together in a small team of 4 people in APC Sydney. During this time i went to the Sydney 2000 Olympics with him and the opening ceremonies of the Paraolympics which were great nights indeed. I miss Shawn 's humour and great love for the Yankees and all American sports. I will always think of you mate, you were a legend indeed, thanks for the memories. Jason Finlayson, Sydney, Australia
Even though I only knew you for the four years of High School at Saints, you impacted my life incredibly. When you were a stranger to me freshman year, but you came up and asked me to dance, it was just a glimmer into the wonderful person i would become friends with from that second on. You will be in my heart forever Shawn.

Jen M., Warwick, Rhode Island
To the Nassaney family and the Goodchild family...The memories of your loved ones last forever. "When someone we love leaves us, their memories become a treasure." I will always remember Shawn...the gangly teenager who loved running but gave baseball "a go at it". When my husband asked me to coach the Babe Ruth Baseball team with him...I laughed..."A female coach? The boys would never hear of it!" But I did...and boy did we all have fun!! Shawn made sure everyone signed baseballs for both of us. Fortunately, his signature on one survived the "baseball collection"...I will never forget the look on Shawn's parents faces when I handed them that ball on Sept. 14th, 2001 at his memorial. Nor will I ever forget Shawn's beautiful, beaming smile. Keep smiling and keep the pace! Until we meet again! Sincerely, The Emery's "Coach Roger" and "Coach Roberta" Roberta Emery, Pawtucket, Rhode Island
To the Nassaney family, today I work with a heavy heart, I can't believe it has been a year since this tragedy. I will always cherish of memories I have of Shawn and during this difficult time I want to let you know, that you are in my thoughts and prayers. Brian Martin, Hanson, Massachusetts
Mom and Dad Nassaney thanks for bringing Shawn into our lives through "SAINTS". While this tragedy has hurt us all something good has come out of this. My husband has been reunited with his son that we haven't seen in 20 years and indirectly it was Shawn that brought them together. Shawn you will always be in our hearts forever.God Bless The Stoddard's  Kevin, Kevin Jr., Leah and Luci
Shawn, You always have put a smile on my face, you were there when people put me down...I always thanked you for that, and I'll always remember you, until we meet again....I'll always think of you and I miss you lots... Anne-Marie Ribiro, Pawtucket, Rhode Island

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Maclovio Lopez, Jr. 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Maclovia Lopez Jr.  He was 41 years old on 9/11/01.  He lived in California and was been in Boston working on a construction pipeline as was his specialty.  He was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 175 traveling home to visit his family while out of town for work.  A quote from his wife: "People always saw hard, but really he was soft on the inside," she said. "I think that anybody who really knew him knows what they're going to miss. Anybody else, it wouldn't have mattered to him anyway."
Here are some messages and memories that have been left for him, his family talks to him often.  I'm so sorry you lost him....
Today would have been your Birthday. Enjoy it in Heaven. Love and miss you!
Dad, 8 years has come and gone but you are missed just the same. I stay away from these sites as much as possible but the truth is I love to read from others who miss you as much as I do. Sometimes I just get so angry when I think about all the time we have missed out on. I dream someday we will be able to have another one of our talks. Well to all those who share my broken heart Thank you for Never forgetting the Man behind the event!!!!! Dannette Lopez, Norwalk, California
Mac,It doesn't seem like 8 years since you left to go home on that fateful day.Just want you to know we still think of you. your friends at "Grimbsbys! Richard Ford, Melrose, Massachusetts
Still missing you....from one of those that got to know you.Betty Jeffers Spiniello Companies Long Beach, California
Today is Thanksgiving and you are greatly missed. Not more today than any other day, but just more noticeably...I am thankful are were in my life and thankful you left me with such a wonderful family to love. Thanks....Love you.
I am missing you something terrible today! I just thought I would write that down. Not a day goes by that something doesn't remind me of you. I love you DAD Dannette Lopez, Norwalk, California

Robert George LeBlanc 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Robert LeBlanc.  He was 70 years old on 9/11/01 and was a geography professor at the University of New Hampshire.  He was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 175.  He had five children, Carolyn, Paul and John LeBlanc and Nissa and Kjel Youngren, and two grandsons.  He was said to have "itchy feet" and lived to travel the world.  I read that there weren't many places that he hadn't been.  Incredible, one of the best of us.  Mr. LeBlanc leaves behind family and friends, left too soon.  Here are some of the messages from left to him and to his family....
Robert was my professor in the autumn of 1975. He was hip, he was cool, he was real. His style, his delivery, his composure was unique as it was rare on campus. Were he alive, I think that Robert George Leblanc would offer compelling thought on how geography combined with insanity, drove men to madness and murder. RIP Robert. Webb Philips, Hampton, New Hampshire

I graduated from UNH in 1989 with a degree in Business Administration and a minor in Geography. I had the pleasure of taking two courses with Dr. LeBlanc; One during my Sophomore year and the other, Geography of Canada during my senior year. Because of his genuine, warm and sincere personality, he was known by his friends and colleagues as simply Bob or Robert despite his tremendous academic accomplishments. I will always remember him as the instructor who had the greatest influence on my college experience. Nothing seemed to please him more than a student who shared his interest and enthusiasm for Geography, especially Canadian Geography. He was also simply a great teacher and lecturer. My class notes seemed to flow effortlessly and you always knew when to just listen and when to pick up your pen and write. My father's family is Franco American and Dr. LeBlanc always took a genuine interest in learning about my family history.
Dr. LeBlanc epitomized so many of the things that make UNH a great school. How many colleges can you go to as a freshman or sophomore and take a class with an instructor
with the experience and credentials that he had? To Dr. LeBlanc's family, may I offer my sincere condolences for your loss and you are in my thoughts and prayers. Jason Mongeon, South Berwick, Maine
I didn't ever meet Robert, but I often walk past the bench placed on the UNH campus in his memory. I pray that he is at peace now in Heaven with the other victims of this terrible tragedy.
Meghan Schrader, Durham, New Hampshire
I graduated from UNH in 1978 with a dual degree, one of which was Geography. Prof. Leblanc was a mentor and personal friend of mine. My heart breaks for his family each time I think of his death. I will always remember driving he and his family to Logan Airport in Boston during Christmas vacation. May God give his family some peace of mind knowing he touched untold lives during his time on earth..... John Wilson, Crockett, Texas
Andrea, My thougts and prayers continue to be with you. Jackie Beaupre, Barrington, New Hampshire
I had Robert Leblanc as a Professor while at UNH. I was only taking Geography as a science elective and I have to say it was one of the toughest electives I took. He was passionate about his classes and really wanted us to know the subject when we left his class. I also got to know him a little outside of the classroom when I worked for the University and found him to be very warm and caring. I know he will be greatly missed by both the University Community as well as friends and family.

Brian Kinney 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Brian Kinney.  He was 28 on 9/11/01.  He worked for Pricewaterhouse as a Manager.  He was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 175 for a business trip to California.  Brian was married and leaves behind his parents and many, many friends. 
Growing up he spent his time working at his dad's service station in Lowell, Mass.  He enjoyed the customers whether at the station in overalls or in a business suit at Pricewaterhouse.  Brian has many pages of personal messages on here are some left for him and for his family - I'm sorry he was killed that awful day, he sounds like a great guy.

Merry Christmas old friend. I miss you so much. Nicole S, Lowell, Massachusetts
To the Kinney Family, You are always in my thoughts, but especially thinking of Brian this week, now that those responsible for that tragic day, have been caught..God Bless. Hope all is well.

Heinrich Kimmig 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying  tribute to Heinrich Kimmig.  He was 43 years old on 9/11/01 and was from Germany.  Heinich was the Chairman of BCT Technology AG.  He was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 175.  I couldn't find very much info on him, sorry about that.  Here are some messages left for him on terrorists hate all of us, being from another country is meaningless to them.....

És ist so unvorstellbar, ma kann es kaum glauben, trotzdem ist es schicksal oder vorherbestimmung! und es heißt bei jedem todesfall wird eine baby geboren, dieses baby ist ein neu anfang für eine bessere welt! Birgit ..., dortmund

So sinnlos ...Mein herzliches Beileid an die  Christiane, Dortmund / Germany
Meine herzliche Anteilnahme der Familie.
May the angels keep you safe, and dry your tears. The world mourns with you.

Ralph Francis Kershaw 9/11/01

I have the honor of paying tribute to Ralph Kershaw.  He was 52 years old on 9/11/01.  Ralph was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 175.  He was a marine surveyor, world traveler, and owner of the Ray Kershaw Company.  Ralph was married to his high school sweetheart and had three children.  He built his house in Manchester-by-the-Sea, a town 30 miles north of Boston, adding onto it as the family grew. 
I'm so sorry that you lost him on that terrible day.  Here are some messages to Ralph and his family that I found on
My father was my hero. The man that I went to when I needed to share a story, solve a problem or just to get one of his big bear hugs. He was the kind of man that would do anything for his family and friends, whether it was building skateboard ramps and playhouses or doing survey work on a friends boat for free. He was a man that commanded respect and he was loved beyond words. We will never forget you Dad.
In loving memory, Kristin Kershaw, daughter
heidi and family,
it has been 9 long years and I think of you all the time. I hope the family is doing good considering all you have been through.My prayers and thoughts are with you! bob oliver J&B Auto, gloucester, Massachusetts
Hedi, Kristin, Matt & Jay
I think of you all often, especially this time of year. I can't express how sorry I was to hear about Ralph and I cannot imagine the loss you have encountered. Your family was very much a part of my life growing up, and I never will forget Ralph or any of you - my thoughts are always with you.
On this fifth anniversary my thoughts are with you guys, Heidi, Kristin, Jason, and Matt. It was a day so much like today. Ralph, you are very missed by the boating community and a tremendous loss for Manchester. Bill Crocker, Damariscotta, Maine
I knew Ralph back when I was in High School, I was a friend of his daughter Kristin. I always remember his great bear hugs and him always "protecting" me and Kristin from the twins, Matt and Jason. My deepest sympathy to his family, Heidi, Kristin, Jason, Matt...everyone. He was a great man and a wonderful father. It may have been quite a few years since I've seen him but I will never forget him. Bless you all, my thoughts are with you always. Tina Brooks, Epping, New Hampshire
I'll always remember Ralph when, after completing the sea trial portion of the survey on the motor yacht which was to become our 'One More Time', he sat back in a chair on the deck and said with a huge smile on his face, 'This is what fun is all about!' as we cruised along at full throttle. Some how, I know he's still smiling. Heidi, it was thru being your UPS driver at the Sweater Shop that I met Ralph. I'm so glad I did! Thank You and God Bless! Wally Hills, Danvers, Massachusetts
I think of Ralph almost every time I go out on my boat. As a young paperboy, Ralph was my boating mentor and helped me in more ways than he could have ever imagined. I'm sure I was a bit of a nuisance, but Ralph always found the time to give some advice, or help me get something at a price a 13 year-old could afford. I hope that I will continue to have the opportunity to return the favor to someone in the same spirit and manner that Ralph gave to me. A true life lesson of patience and kindness. Always grinning past the #4 bouy John Elder, Hamilton, Massachusetts
My deepest sympathies to the Kershaw Family.
My name is Tom First. I only met Ralph once. He was a memorable man. Ralph inspected my boat in the late 90's before i purchased her. To say that Ralph was knowledgeable is an understatement. He actually told me what was going to be wrong with the boat as he approached it for the first time (before he stepped on her) -- he knew the weaknesses and flaws of every sailboat. Ralph didn't inspect my boat simply to tell me what was wrong, he did it to tell me how to repair and care for her. I spoke to Ralph several times before and after i purchased the boat and then spent the next 4 years going down Ralph's list, one by one, rebuilding my boat from the bottom up. I saw Ralph's name on TV on September 11th and it brought tears to my eyes. Though i did not know him well, he represented to me a kind, caring man who took great pride in his work and his family. He told me about his father, his wife and his two boys while we spent that day together. I still remember shaking his big hand. I have a wonderful relationship with my father and i imagined him to have the same type of relationship with his children... My prayers are with your family on the anniversary of that tragic day....Tom First, Concord, Massachusetts