Friday, September 11, 2015

On This National Day of Rememberance

The wonderful Melissa Wells keeps a heartbreaking and lovely tradition on her blog. On September 11, she seeks to learn more about the people who were lost on that terrible day. I am following her lead. 

Donna Marie Rothenberg
Here is what the New York Times wrote about Donna who worked for AON Corp in WTC 2. 
"As a birthday present a decade ago, a friend placed an inquiry in  a New York magazine, seeking a proper suitor for Donna Rothenberg, a widow in her early 40s. A gentleman named Edward Schmall responded with a letter carefully crafted to attract her interest. It changed his life. When Ms. Rothenberg eventually moved into Mr. Schmall's apartment in the flatiron district, she brought more than two cats. She brought wonderful experiences from having lived in Europe, Asia, and South America. She brought a gift for cooking. She brought a zest for life that was reflected in her colorful wardrobe. 'She wasn't somebody who wore a lot of black,' remembered her cousin Susan Sullivan. She also brought the reassurance that she would be there for crisis small and large, from Mr. Schmall's battle against smoking to his sudden collapse in California. Ms. Rothenberg, a global personal affairs executive for the Aon Corporation, was 53 when she died, and the man she met through a personal ad so long ago struggles to reconcile his blessing and his loss. 'What I couldn't do, she did well; what I did well, she did better.' he said. 'She filled in all my gaps.'"


  1. I tend not to get overwrought on days like this (how many days are there like this?!), but this was a lovely post and brings me back to that morning 14 years ago while here in Portland. Sadness fills the creases of my heart when I read this, nonetheless.


  2. Oh Lisa. Oh my heart...thank you for sharing this today. My heart is full of the stories.

  3. Donna Marie Rothenberg. We carry you in our hearts.