Personal Finance 

9/11: Put Family & Friends First

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Today marks the ten year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, an especially poignant anniversary for those who were directly affected and an especially deep wound to New Yorkers. I grew up on Long Island and spent a summer working at a startup at 50 Broadway, so on numerous occasions I would walk between the World Trade Center towers and just stare up. The buildings were, quite literally, dizzyingly tall. I was fortunate in that no one I knew had been hurt or killed during 9/11. It’s something I’m always thankful for.

I don’t usually write anything on the anniversary of 9/11 but on this tenth anniversary, I thought it was appropriate that I shared a little of what was on my mind.

My parents visited this past weekend and one of the things my dad told me was that, in the end, life is about family and friends. It’s about the relationships you make, not the amount of money you make. It’s not about where you placed in school, where you graduated from, or what your title at your job was. While there will always be competition among friends, whose kid did better at what or who is a better golfer, in the end it’s that relationship that matters, not who is actually better. It’s something we can often lose sight of in the daily grind. When you retire, you’ll look back fondly at those relationships and not whether you had a window office.

This is no more evident than with the story about Cantor Fitzgerald, a firm located on the 105th floor and that lost 658 employees (75%). Howard Lutnick, Chairman and CEO, survived because he took his son to his first day of kindergarten. While the article focuses on the phoenix-like return of the firm, I wanted to point out that Lutnick, for as hard of a person he may seem on the outside (or at least portrayed in the media), was saved because he put family first (at least in that instance).

So as you get ready to go about your day tomorrow, remember that in the end, family and friends are what matter. Money doesn’t.

{ 8 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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8 Responses to “9/11: Put Family & Friends First”

  1. eric says:

    I can’t believe it’s been a decade. I still have some vivid memories of that day.

  2. Andy says:

    Well said. Sometimes we forget the important things in the routine of life. You can always get more money, but family and great friends are in short supply.

  3. dave says:

    9/11 could have easily been prevented if they had locks on the pilot’s door and let pilots have guns. 4 fools with Box cutters are no match for guns

    • saladdin says:

      So if you shoot a gun in an airplane nothing bad happens?

      Could have easily been prevented if there was a moat and a draw bridge around the cockpit.

      • dave says:

        Putting locks on the pilot’s door is common sense like car seat belts. The pilot would just shoot the terrorist in the head or chest if the airlines uses cheap breakable doors

  4. elloo says:

    Good god. Enough with the armchair quarterbacking about guns and locks (and don’t forget light sabers. Love the idea about moats!). Focus on Jim’s great thoughts about what is important now and not what coulda/shoulda been done.

    • saladdin says:

      The idea of “what is important now” is stupid. No one lives their life that way. “Live for today” and “Treat each day like it’s your last” are sentences for morons. We should be focusing on reality not worthless cliches.

  5. Lori says:

    Thanks for the reminder.

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