I watch the documentaries about what we now call 9/11. I remember it, on this the 10th anniversary. Yet the events seem kind of distant now. I don’t want them to be. During one doco I watched an interview with a woman named Edie, she is the sister of the man who heads up ‘Cantor Fitzgerald‘
This is the financial services business based on the 101 – 105th floors of World Trade Centre One. This was some 2-6 floors above the impact zone. 658 employees (which was all of employees in the office at the time of the attacks) which made up about 2/3rds of the company’s NY employees died that day.
Edie asked if, for the 10th anniversary people might select one victim of the tragedy and learn a little about them. I did a search and found the complete list of those that died. As I scrolled down the very long list I wondered how I could choose one person…as I continued to scroll down the long list it occurred to me that I might choose a ‘Jane’.
I found Jane S. Beatty
This is my tribute to her.
Jane was a technical supervisor at Marsh & McLennan Cos Inc. on the 96th floor of WTC One, Shortly before Sept. 11, Beatty marked her fifth anniversary of living free of breast cancer.
In the New York Times I found this tribute to her ‘When her first marriage broke up, she was thrust into the job market for the first time and found work as a cocktail waitress in Toronto, where she was raised. Then she learned computer skills and switched careers, eventually becoming a technical supervisor at Marsh & McLennan in New York. Ms. Beatty, 53, faced another challenge more recently when she was found to have breast cancer. By that time, she had left Canada and moved to Belford, N.J., to marry the retired police officer she had met on a blind date while visiting a friend. The friend, Lorraine Greskow, said Ms. Beatty remained upbeat, even after her mastectomy. “She always had a smile on her face, even through all that,” she said. In August, Jane Beatty and her husband, Bob, went to Atlantic City to privately mark her fifth anniversary of being cancer-free. She told her mother it was too early to make a big fuss. “She said she wasn’t going to celebrate until she was clear for six years,” said her mother, Beth Chrystal.’
I thought about Jane, and the challenges she faced. I’ve had health challenges too; I feel empathy for the battle she faced and won. I remembered New Years eve 1999 and wondered how Jane might have celebrated that milestone. I found myself hoping she had felt happiness in her life and in her work through what would be the last years of her short life. I wondered how she celebrated the 4th of July in 2000, and had she felt the temperature change as Summer turned to Fall? Had she begun to think about Thanksgiving, and the thanks she had to give. Had she thought about how she would spend winter? What she might do during the holidays. I wondered how she got to work each day…that day. Who had she greeted and what had she planned for her lunch break. Jane, this Jane has become real to me, now that I know more about her. Jane’s mom died last year. I hope they are together.
Yes, Jane died on the day the world changed. Yet today I am changed. I am thankful for Edie’s request. I have met Jane S Beatty. I so admire women of courage. I hope Jane’s family are ok with this tribute.
I did a further search and came across a Legacy Guest Book. I read some of the tributes, of the lives Jane had touched and has touched since. I read of her mother’s death. I found many links of tribute.
NOTE: My friend Mark from Staten Island NY was able to tell me about the way Jane would have travelled to work. He spoke of the many families on the Island that lost loved ones, work associates and friends in this day. He has offered to seek out Jane’s name on the memorial now in place and make a brass rubbing for me. I am touched by this offer.