Thinking of Ann I am not sure why it has taken me two years to post this message -- to reach out to Ann's family and friends with my story of how she touched me. Iwant you to know that there is another person outhere who understands the exceptional nature of Ann. I certainly have thought of her and your loss a hundred times over. I think it may have taken me so long to write because I just can'tgrasp that something so horrible actually happened to someone so wonderful.
I went to St. Olaf College, across the river from Carleton. There I became fast friends with one Suzy Boggs -- she was quite the troublemaker, but that's another story. We both were majoring in Political Science and spent many hours together muddling our waythrough policies and papers. Ann often made the trek from Carleton to St.Olaf to visit her high school friend Suzy -- and that is how I met Ann. I can remember the three of us sitting on the lawn outside our library talking about an issue from one of our classes. Suzy and I were going back and forth trying to sort out our thoughts, after a while Ann chimed in with such a clear perspective it amazed us. ThoughI did not spend that much time with Ann, when I was around her I was always amazed by her mind.
I was visiting Minnesota in the fall of 2001 and took a friend through my college campus to show him where I had spent all those years. It sparked my memory of Ann and I asked my friends "Isn't it strange how some people can come into your life briefly, but leave such a lasting impression?" I continued on witha story about my senior year when I was required to take a statstics class for my major. I am no whiz with numbers and was easily disheartened and distracted. For some reason Ann was in that class, I think she had been off-campus for a semester when it was offered at Carleton and it was only offered at St. Olaf when she needed to take it. At any rate, I was failing miserably and I believe she was coasting through (she never let on, but I could tell). She insisted on coming over every Saturday afternoon that semester to "study" with me. In all honesty, she was tutoring me. And I was a bad student -- I hated statistics. I stared out the window. I brought up other stories. She kept coming back. And coming back. And I passed the class. Avoiding all sorts of hassles and a major dig to my self-esteem. Mostly, it meant so much to me that someone who barely knew me would make such an effort and take such care to make sure I was a success. It really made a lasting impression on me. I wrapped up my story to my friend by telling him what a free, happy spirit Ann had -- like sunshine. I wondered where she was, what she was up to.
I was shocked and saddened when I arrived home from that trip to find a letter fromSuzy telling me that Ann worked at Cantor FitzGerald and was lost on 9/11. A part of me still cannot believe it. I am terribly sorry for your loss. Ann has an amazing spirit and I carry an appreciation for her kindness, generosity and smile with me in my heart.