I signed up at 2,996 by D.Challener Roe a site dedicated to remember all of the fallen from the September 11th attacks. I was given the name of Michelle Marie Henrique. After doing some research on Michelle the already hard day of September 11th became even harder. I knew no one in New York, Flight 93 or at the Pentagon that perished. I remember listening to everything unfold over the radio. But to read of an actual person with family who has been grieving for 5 years was very touching. I had a totally different outlook on that day. Up until my research began I had thought about how September 11th had made me feel. While I didn't realize how it made others feel. Mostly because again, I knew no one who was injured and it was my accounts of a horrific day.
Michelle was 27 years old when she was taken away from her beloved family. She worked for Fiduciary Trust International in Tower 2 on the 97th floor as an administrative assistant. I had the initial link from September11victims. From there reading what people had wrote about Michelle started to really sink in.
Her Prom date Chris Bennett wrote:
I just wanted to thank you for being my prom date back in 1990. We had a great time; you're a great girl and you will be truly missed. My thoughts are with your family. I will treasure the memory always.
I read this and cried... Here is a man saying good-bye to his prom date for the last time over a message board. Like he said, he will treasure the memory always.
Another message from Tony:
It's been years since we last saw eachother. In fact the sadest part of you not being here is I just found out about you a few days ago. I was very upset. The last time I saw you was at our graduation mass from high school. We even went to the senior prom in the same limo. You were a great girl and a great person. Fly to the angels!
A fellow Co-worker, Ed Schmitt:
I worked with Michelle At Fiduciary Trust and every morning I would walk past her desk on the way to our vault on the 97th floor and say hello to her over the cubicle wall where she sat.
On September 11 I only got halfway there-I saw the plane approaching out of the northbound windows of tower two. It was coming directly at us-and was going to hit right at our floor. It turned and hit tower one right in front of me. I immediately left-after first yelling at everyone in earshot to get out.
When I heard Michelle didn't make it it hurt me really bad-I wish I had gotten her out with me. She was so beautiful the way her eyes mathced the color of her hair-and she always seemed to be in a cheerful mood. People like that brighten up the lives of everyone around them and the world will be forever just a little darker without her in it.
The only thing I can do to honor her and all my co-workers memories is to live my life in a way that does them honour-because I have that second chance that so many like Michelle deserved more than me
Ed was one of the last people to see Michelle alive. And reading his recollections of that day four years later (from her site) were much too vivid. Ed remembers it like it was yesterday.
After reading the comments left on Michelle's page I began to do searches outside of September11victims.com. I found out that her boyfriend, Craig Castro, had purchased her an engagement ring. Craig was going to propose to her in December on her 28th birthday. Since then I am sure he has celebrated every holiday very differently. It is difficult to lose a loved one, let alone someone you want to spend the rest of your life with.
Michelle has family in law enforcement, her father retired city police officer, her brother Paul, a NYPD officer and his twin a detective for the NYPD as well.
I then found a picture of Michelle's father, George. He was featured on Peprallyusa, showing the Lives Lost on 9-11 are Etched in Memories and on Pysiques.
I have began to think to myself... Did she at least get to call someone and say goodbye? Or did she have to go through this all alone?