Monday, September 11, 2006

2,996 Tribute to Lorraine D. Antigua

When I heard about the 2,996 project, my partner Pat urged me to sign up for a name. I didn't want to, because I knew it would be upsetting; how could it not be? But the whole of 9-11 is upsetting anyway (it would be strange if it wasn't), so I signed up, and recieved a name. And I was upset indeed.

Nothing could have prepared me to read the story about Lorraine Antigua. When you read it, you don't want it to end with 9-11, you don't want that part of it to be true.

Lorraine worked in the securities lending department of Cantor Fitzgerald. She was 32 years old. From Middletown NJ, she was the mother of two children (Caitlin and Aaron) from a previous marriage. She was also the fiancee of Brian Wilkes; they were to be married, perhaps in the fall.

I didn't have the pleasure of knowing Lorraine personally, but reading about her, it's easy to see that she came from a loving family, and was a Light in many people's lives.

The following tribute appeared in the NY Times:

In the Garden, Under the Sea

The plan, Brian Wilkes said with a gentle laugh, was that he and Lorraine Antigua would marry at a drive-through chapel, maybe in Las Vegas, maybe this fall, while on a Harley-Davidson. "She said she would buy the Harley," he said.

Mr. Wilkes met Ms. Antigua, 32, at a going-away party two years ago, on the cusp of a move to North Carolina. They nurtured a long-distance relationship, until he decided to return north to marry Ms. Antigua.

Ms. Antigua loved working in the securities lending arm at Cantor Fitzgerald so much that she refused other job offers. At 8:50 a.m. on Sept. 11, she left a message for Mr. Wilkes on his mobile phone, saying a plane had rammed her building but she was O.K. He never managed to reach her.

They lived together in a house Ms. Antigua had bought in Middletown, N.J., where they had planned to make a new family with her two children from a previous marriage. They filled the garden with azaleas and sunflowers. To hear Mr. Wilkes tell it, Ms. Antigua was all good things -- an avid reader, a scuba diver and a dear friend. "She's awesome," he said, slipping from habit into the present tense. "She ruined me for other women."

I'm going to reprint just a few comments left on memorial sites by people who knew her:

Date: 09/27/2004

From: Laura Schwartz
Date: 12/23/2004
Message: Wishing your mother, father, brothers, children, aunts, uncles, inlaws a peaceful holiday season. I know this is a difficult time.

From: Brad Memoli
Date: 09/02/2005
Message: Lorraine, My Best Friends Mother. You were one of the best moms i have ever met. You always brought a smile to my face whenever i felt bad. Your smile could light a room up. i will never gorget you. I hope you're still smiling in heaven. God Bless You

09/10/2002 4:18:59 PM
Hey Lorraine, Or Rainey like Maria used to call you,
I still can't believe that a year has gone by so quickly. We all miss you terribly. I know you're with God because the day after this whole thing happened I had a vision that you were looking down at us and smiling as if you were letting us know that you were OK and in a better place. And I truly believe that. Kaitlin and Aaron have a lot of Guardian angels who will look after them. I really wish you were here. God bless Rainey! And may you rest peacefully!
Love your cousin
And to my Aunt Ramona,I love you and I know you miss her but She's in a much better place.God Bless!

December 30, 2005
Dear Lorraine,
One more year has passes but your memory is still with us all. Your laughter your smile and your wit is remebered fondly. Know that your children are taken care of with love and are always protected by all of us. During the holiday as well as year around you are missed. Be at at peace as you said Al is always there. We miss the morning breakfasts we all shared now we still have them but you are in our hearts. Thank you for being part of all of us.
Sleep with the angels that is where we look for you .
Lidia Antigua (New York, NY )

July 25, 2006
My dear Lorraine,today I was looking at you pictures, and fell like it was just yesterday that you was cooking, and playing around whith AAron, and Caitlin, making plans for the vacation, you know that is not a minute or a hour that you face comes to my mind. Lorraine I miss you so much. God Bless you always. Love mom.
Ramona Schroeder (Davenport, FL )

Lorraine had a lot to live for, and is greatly missed. She would have been 37 now. Her children remember her fondly; she lives on in the memories and hearts of her family and friends. God bless her, and her family.

Related Links:

Here are some of the on-line Memorials where Lorraine is remembered.

NY Times

Guest Book for
Lorraine D. Antigua

The family photos here are from the photo album there. This site has a large guest book, with 18 pages of entries. It's a great way to remember Lorraine.


Lorraine has a memorial page set up to honor her, at:

Cantor Fitzgerald Families Memorial

HT to Tammy Bruce:
Remembering: Your 9/11 Resources



Fits said...

As a born and bred NY'er who also owned a house on the Jersey Shore, it was my pleasure to have made Lorraine's acquaintance, for she lived only a few miles away. Great gal.Great person. It's good to see she wound up in good hands for this tribute.

Chas said...


Thanks for sharing that. It was sad writing the tribute, because she did indeed sound like a wonderful woman, and a great mom. She and her family deserved better than what they got.

Dionne said...

Wonderful tribute!! You did a great job. 32 is definitely too young for a beautiful woman like her to die--very sad!! I linked to yours and Patrick's tributes on mine.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful tribute!

juanitagf said...

Well done, Chas. It is an honor to be a part of this.

Mahndisa S. Rigmaiden said...

09 12 06

Well done Chas. I am too emotionally frail for this, but wanted to say this was touching and you have done an honor to her. I hope and pray for the sanity and mental safety of her ex fiance and children. Have a great rest of week.

The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

Yes, I'm still popping in on 9/11 tributes. It was difficult to read so many, emotionally draining as much as finding the time to read.

(Thanks for linking to my tribute post, btw).

When I heard about the 2,996 project, my partner Pat urged me to sign up for a name. I didn't want to, because I knew it would be upsetting; how could it not be? But the whole of 9-11 is upsetting anyway (it would be strange if it wasn't), so I signed up, and recieved a name. And I was upset indeed.

Your whole memorial was perfect; but that opening really set it up nicely. What a loss to those who knew and loved her! Lorraine's a year younger than me. I hope her children are doing well, and her fiancee.

Chas said...

Thank you for your kind words, Wordsmith.

Lorraine had so much to live for, a life filled with promise, and so many who loved her. I'm glad that she had that in her life, and they love her still, the love doesn't stop.

There is such a lot of sorrow in all this, but I think we must remember those who were lost to us that day. Your tribute to David was very moving. I'm sure it was difficult to write, but thanks for taking the time to tell us his story.