Sunday, September 10, 2006
Michael Edward Gould
We never met, but when I started to read about you for this memorial project, I felt like I did know you. I wish, I had. I think, I would have liked you a lot. I think, we would have been friends.
It was odd. My reason for wanting to do this project was because of how much I identified with the terrorism. Even though 9/11 was on a much bigger scale than the Oklahoma City bombing, and it was from foreign attackers ... it still hit at the heart of our nation. I'd lost a friend in the OKC bombing. A friend of mine died in the OKC bombing, and in honor of her, I wanted to honor someone who died in this tragedy as well.
So, I started to research who you were. I found that you were a 29 year old, from Hoboken NJ. You had lived for a few years in San Francisco and had recently moved back to the East Coast. You were a securities trader for Cantor Fitzgerald that was the 104th floor of the World Trade Center.
Your degree was in finance from Philadelphia's Villanova University in 1994. When you graduated, you got a job with Cantor Fitzgerald, the nation's largest bond broker. You started working for t the firm in New York City, moved to San Francisco, then back to the East Coast.
You loved sports, having played both hockey and baseball as a teenager.As an adult, you enjoyed weight lifting, and also enjoyed in-line skating, playing the guitar and driving fast cars.
Those were the facts. Statistics. General Late 20's hard working American man. Just the kind the terrorists were after. To tear apart our nation.
But I dug deeper and found a tribute page to you. My heart broke, it was on the same tribute page that held tributes to the Oklahoma City Bombing victims. Some of the same comments written to my dear friend Trudy were written to you. You weren't just a man who went to work every day and played just as hard.
You were a loving man, who cared about your friends and family. When you committed yourself to someone, they became a part of your heart. The emotions in the goodbyes and I miss you's were felt through the computer screen so deep ... it was unmistakeable what kind of a person you were. You had a heart of gold, just like Trudy. How fitting that I did this for Trudy, and got someone like you to have the privilege to honor.
Some of the comments made were:August 26, 2005
Mike, I Love and Miss You. I went to Braga Park the other day to pick up my Daughter, When I got there my Husband was puzzled? Why are you crying? I remember Mike here, I said. I Love and miss you my sweet Nixon. Kiss my Mom for me. Love, Justine
July 30, 2005
Happy Birthday, Mike. This date brings bittersweet memories for me. Burnt birthday brownies Fed Ex'd to Hoboken (both you and Martha Stewart were disappointed)...
Time goes on, but your memory never fades. I try to focus on the light, the happy and many fun times; that's how I will always remember you. I will continue leaving it to God to provide comfort when I feel sad about the fact that you are gone. Miss you.
Vanessa Mills (Redwood City, CA )
September 8, 2004
May you know that you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I think of you often and know your looking down upon us. I think about ALL the VU memories we shared together and smile and laugh a lot thinking about those times together. God Bless you and your family and know I pray for you ALL daily and often! May I meet each day with the determination and drive you did Mike..Thinking of you.
Justin O'Malley (Philadelphia)
December 31, 2001
Dear Mike, It goes without saying that the holidays find us missing you so much. As I look back on the past year trying to reach for the things to be thankful for, I think of you and all that you taught me. You inspired me to be a better person, to give with my heart, to love unconditionally. You taught me to be strong, and that strength of character and loyalty are some of the greatest and rarest qualities that one could possess. I will never forget when my mom fell ill and I called you from the hospital. I said, “Treat your parents like gold while they’re here, because you never know when your time with them will be the last.” There wasn’t even a pause before you said, “I could have told you that a long time ago.” You knew exactly what it meant to treasure the people you care about. So as this year comes to a close, it is not your loss that I will remember, but all that you have taught, inspired and gave. Your spirit does live on and you will never be forgotten.
Vanessa Mills (Burlingame, CA )
You taught people what it was to love, to care ... and to inspire. So did Trudy. It is not fair that you were taken away in such an awful painful way. Many today will be writing about how the terror happened, and how it effected our world, but I wanted to write to you, and tell you that your presences is missed in this world. You were important and your memory remains ... and will be treasured.
God bless your family, God bless you.
A stranger and fellow American,