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 legacy.com:
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 Legacy.com.
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