The latest STG charity is up.
I read recently, in the somber flurry of September 11 memorial writing, that September 11 was unique because it reversed the typical order of tragedy in war: rather than it being the parents who sent their children off to face an uncertain fate, on 9/11 it was the children who sent off their parents.
One of those children, though not yet born at the time, was Pierce Woodall, daughter of Brent and Tracy Woodall. Tracy was five weeks pregnant on 9.11.01, when she and her unborn child sent Brent, a stock trader, off to work at Bruyette and Woods on the 89th floor of the south tower of the World Trade Center.
Tracy was among the thousands of loved ones who had the bittersweet experience of receiving a phone call from WTC that September morning, as Brent called to let her know all was well in his tower. This was to change, however, when the second plane hit.
Tracy finally reached Brent on the 87th floor of the South Tower, where he had reached a locked door. Brent–6-foot-5, handsome, a college athlete at Berkeley and former minor league pitcher for the Cubs–assured his wife of 31 that everything would be all right.
And like so many people that bright clear day, that call was the last time Tracy heard her husband’s voice.
Not long before 9/11, Tracy and Brent had started talking about launching a foundation that would provide free care-giving education to families of children with autism. For the less familiar, autism is a neurological disorder that appears during the first three years of life. Estimates are that it occurs in approximately 2 to 6 in 1,000 individuals, and typical characteristics include problems with social relationships and emotional communication.