A former Californian, I have, unfortunately, too much experience covering disasters. On Sept. 11, as my colleague David Horrigan and I walked south from our midtown office, I was filled with adrenaline and dread.
I remembered the Pettit & Martin shootings, the Loma Prieta earthquake, and the Oakland hills fire -- all events that turned acquaintances into widows and rendered friends homeless. Carol Kingsley and her young son; Frederick Hertz, safe, but whose beloved home was ash. Just two of many names. What I remember most is their courage. How they faced the unfaceable with grace and dignity.
So as David and I walked to what was left of the World Trade Center complex, I knew that, as in the past, it would be the strength of the people I would meet that would carry me through the day. And that it was important, to the living and the dead, to tell their stories. Father George Rutler, who lost a cherished colleague; a wife fearful of the fate of her spouse. So many, many others.
And so, I walked -- to honor the names I knew from San Francisco, and the names I did not yet know, but soon would learn, from New York.
Ironically, one of the names of the missing is not from New York, but from Tempe, Az. At press time, my dear friend Donna Killoughey was among those hoping for a miracle for her beloved husband Gary Bird. To Donna and her children Amanda and Andrew, and to Fr. Rutler, we dedicate this issue.