Gertrude Alagero

“She enjoyed life to the fullest”

Friends, family remember former Saugus resident Trudi Alagero

Those who were close to Gertrude “Trudi” Alagero say there was not a soul she encountered that she did not affect in a positive way. Whether it was her engaging smile, her love of children or her overall enthusiasm for being on planet Earth, her friends and family say that Trudi had a way of making people feel good.

“She truly enjoyed life to the fullest,” said her brother Paul. “She was just such a dynamic individual. I’m truly blessed that I had 37 great years with my sister. She just enjoyed all facets of life.”

Trudi had celebrated her 37th birthday the weekend before the fateful Tuesday, Sept. 11 when she was killed after a hijacked airplane collided with Tower 1 of the World trade Center, where she was working on the 94th floor. She is survived by her mother Marie Alagero, three older brothers, Stephen, Charlie and Paul, and four nieces and nephews. Trudi grew up on Chestnut Street in Saugus and was a 1982 graduate of Saugus High School. She also joined all three of her brothers as graduates of Providence College, where she earned her degree in 1986.

The night before the incident, Trudi and her fiancé Peter Walther had been making plans for their Jan. 5 wedding by listening to tapes and reading books on Africa where they planned to go for their honeymoon. Walther and Trudi had met at their offices at Marsh Inc., a subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan where they each worked and where Trudi was a Senior Vice President for Private Client Services. Walther said that he feels blessed for the time that he spent with Trudi while she was alive and will never forget what a beautiful person she was.

“She was as beautiful inside as she was on the outside,” Walther said. “ She just had this incredible ability to become absolutely silly at the drop of a dime and at the same time she could put on a beautiful dress and stop traffic. She had a warmth about her and a fierce loyalty to her friends and family.”

Paul Alagero remembered his sister as a woman who had a zest for life. Just a few weeks ago she had taken a week to go to Newport to learn how to sail and also had taken classes in gourmet cooking. More recently, she and her fiancé returned from a vacation in Maine where they spent time fly-fishing. Paul said that these were the happiest times of his sister’s life.

“Any opportunity to do something that she had never tried, she was going to try it,” Paul said. “It was just a great place in her life that she was at right now. She was the happiest that I’ve ever seen her.”

Reprinted from the Saugus Advertiser with the permission of the Community Newspaper Company.

Gertrude Alagero: The Luckiest in the World

She always had time for a friendly chat with the corner newsdealer and the counterman at the deli, and she was sometimes forgetful about paying parking tickets and bills. But Gertrude Alagero, nicknamed Trudi, was also a determined competitor. After she taught her fiancé, Peter B. Walther, to snowboard, she never let him beat her when they raced down Okemo Mountain in Vermont.

Ms. Alagero, a senior vice president at Marsh Private Client Services, a division of Marsh & McLennan, and Mr. Walther, who was her supervisor before they began dating in 1998, had planned to marry in Boston on Jan. 5.

A few days before the terrorist attack, Mr. Walther said, she pressed her fingers to his mouth while they were walking toward the subway from their Upper West Side apartment.

'Shhh,' she said, 'I need to tell you something: I am the luckiest woman in the world.'

On Sept. 7, the day that Ms. Alagero turned 37, she gave Mr. Walther a Nikon camera so he could become adept at using it before their honeymoon in Africa. He snapped two rolls of pictures, mostly of her.

Copyright (c) 2001 by The New York Times Co. Reprinted by permission.

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Thinking of you Trudi as I always do and the others lost on that horrible day. It seems like yesterday to me. You are sorely missed each and every day. Even though it has been 15 years it doesn't seem it is. This tragedy and losing so many colleagues on that day will never be the same for me. Time, for some reason, hasn't healed for me, and I'm sure never will. Not for anyone. You are in my prayers Trudi, god bless you.
Irene Morrison, Colleague
Sep 9 2016 0:28PM
Thinking of you today. You were beautiful inside and out. Gone too soon. I hope you are somewhere happy.
Eileen McGuire, Colleague
Sep 11 2014 9:49AM
This day has forever changed our lives. It is such a somber and distressing day for us all. I write to you Trudi, year after year, because I think of you often and can't begin to understand why this happened, only that it did and we lost so many amazing and beautiful people. I just wanted to say, once again, I miss you, we all miss you, and you will always remain in my mind and my heart.
Irene Morrison, Colleague
Sep 11 2014 9:05AM
Trudi if it weren't for you I would never have attended PC-I am so lucky that my sister in laws Dad, Ted Lynch, introduced us back in 1984 when I came to look at PC. Your smile sparkled, you were full of life and always had time for everyone. I hope you are looking down in heaven and smiling on those who knew & loved you! Miss you big sister!
Jennifer LaTorre Palombo, Friend
Sep 11 2013 9:46PM
As each year passes, time seems to take away a small portion of the pain and anguish we all felt when we lost so many people that day. Our hearts and souls were ripped open and will probably never heal. Heaven gained so many angels that fateful day. I think about you Trudi, numerous times throughout the year and I wanted to say we all miss you and all our colleagues that were lost. You are in my heart and will never be forgotten.
Irene Morrison, Colleague
Sep 11 2013 8:57AM
Trudi was my cousin and I grew up sharing holidays with her at our grandparent's house. Because of a very painful divorce of her parents she and her siblings became estranged from my mother's side of the family and I hadn't seen her in decades. It has been wonderful to read these tributes to her and realize that the joyful child I played with grew up to be a joyful adult who touched so many lives with her smile and warmth. Thank you all for sharing your remembrances of her.
Lisa Torraca, Family
Sep 16 2012 5:48PM
One of my favorite memories of Trudi - she would leave the apartment in the middle of winter with no jacket and one of us would scold her and say it's freezing outside why don't you put on a jacket and in response on her way out the door, she would always say 'pride will keep me warm' Miss you Trudi !
Suzanne Hickman, Friend
Sep 11 2011 12:06PM
I can't believe you have been gone for ten years. I have great memories of going to PC with you, and of course working together at Tucker Anthony after school. My favorite memory is our trip to Aruba with Lisa Hannon. I'll never forget your lovely matching kelley green and navy blue luggage! You had such a sense of style and a way of making everything so fun. I think of you often and miss you every day!
Carrie Noviello, Friend
Sep 11 2011 9:18AM
Ten years of a world less special without you. Every time I put on a scarf, I recite the words you taught me to help me tie the scarf properly. I then get to remember your wonderful smile and outlook on life and it helps me the rest of the day. Your beautiful memory lives on. God bless you and your family
Karen Beldy Torborg, Friend
Sep 9 2011 10:48PM
I still often think of how generous Trudy was with her knowledge and time. It is many years past but she had an impact on me and she is missed.
Anne Rappa, Colleague
Mar 18 2011 9:52PM
Trudi.... Another year has passed...I can't believe it's nine years already. It just seems like yesterday. Words cannot express the pain we have felt and continue to feel each day of every year. We truly miss you Trudi and everyone else lost on that terrible day. I continue to keep you in my heart and in my mind...god bless you
Irene Morrison, Colleague
Sep 10 2010 9:08AM
Was just thinking of Trudi as i saw the fuss about what to do at the 'Ground Zero' location. I guess they are arguing about whether to build a mosque there or not. Whatever the case, Trudi was a great person and a good friend, I went to PC with her and she was just simply a beautiful person both on the inside and the outside. She always took the time to make you feel like you were the most important person in the room when you spoke with her. If the people bickering about Ground Zero knew or met Trudi i think they would probably realize how shallow their infighting truly is. God Bless you Trudi!
Derron Darcy, Friend
Jul 20 2010 11:17PM
Another year has passed, and it's still the same to me.....the sadness of what happened and losing so many friends and colleagues. It's eight years ago Trudi, and nothing has changed. You are missed and thought of continually. We will never forget. America will never forget. You are always in my thoughts and prayers.....
Irene Morrison, Colleague
Sep 11 2009 10:17AM
I had the opportunity to work with Trudi. Not only was she beautiful, she was very smart. She was soft spoken and walked with grace. I admired her classiness. She is heaven, I am sure, gracing every one around her with her charm and beauty.
Michelle K. Hall, Colleague
Sep 11 2009 8:55AM
Here I am again Trudi seven years later. I think about you often and I know your in a better place with God who has wrapped his arms around you and shined his light upon you. I pray for you and for the others that were lost on that tragic day. I will never forget you.
Irene Morrison, Colleague
Sep 11 2008 9:07AM
(We graduated together.) Rememering Trudi and her family. I also remember Jan 5th in your memory and pray for Peter.
Kay Snook, Friend
Sep 11 2008 9:01AM
The computer would not let me submit my tribute until I completed 'Your relationship' above, but because I never knew Trudi or any members of her family, I do not come under the category of 'family', 'friend' or 'colleague', yet somehow I feel connected to her. I selected colleague because, we . . . human beings . . . are all 'colleagues' in one way or another. As a resident of Winthrop, and an avid bicycle rider, I frequently ride on the bike paths at the Deer Island Treatment Plant. It is there that, last Saturday, I paused from my ride to sit on the park bench dedicated to Trudi by her dad. The inscription on plaque on the bench intrigued me to find out more information about Trudi and her family. It was interesting to learn that Trudi was a snowboarder who sometimes rode at Okemo Mt., where I often ride my snowboard. I know that it may seem strange to some that here, in 2008, almost 7 years after the attack, a total stranger would submit a note of memorial to Trudi, but I am compelled to do so in order to let those reading this know that we, proud Americans, will never forget the terrible events of September 11, 2001, and those unfortunate heroes who lost their lives on that tragic day and the families left behind who grieve for them. God Bless the memory of Trudi Alagero, and all of those innocent people who died on that horrific day. Steven James Winthrop, MA
Steven James, Colleague
Aug 18 2008 9:42PM
Now, 5 years later after that horrific day, I remember my colleague and friend Trudi. We became acquainted when she and Peter would visit our Newport Beach office and we would call on our 'SKM' related clients. She was always so professional and very well received. Her wonderful personality and sense of humor made a big difference with our client relationships. I am very proud and fortunate to have worked with her. Several days before 9-11-01, I sent Trudi an e-mail with an inspirational attachment. I didn't hear back from her. When the victims list was made public, I knew why. She touched a special place in my heart and I was saddened knowing that the planned Safari with Peter for their honeymoon was not to be. I often think about what could have been for Trudi. Those of you that had her for 37 years were blessed. I am very happy to have known her and I want all of you to know my thoughts and prayers are with you and all of Trudi's Marsh colleagues that joined her in that final journey. She was such a beautiful person. God Bless!
John Graef, Colleague
Sep 11 2006 6:01PM
I was friends with Trudi at Providence College. We never dated or became 'pen-pals' but we used to have many, many lengthy conversations at parties or at one of the local college bars during our time together at school. We were truly friends. She was funny, always smiled and always seemed to be in a good mood. Upon graduation we each went our own way and every few years I would get a piece of information as to where she was or how she was doing. I didn't find out about 9-11 until a year or so ago and felt sad and horrible all at once. My prayers go out to Trudi and her family. She was a beautiful girl. Tim Phelan
Tim Phelan, Friend
Sep 11 2006 3:32PM
I am thinking of Trudi and remembering her and all those that died on Sept. 11th. Although I did not know her well, I remember her from our days at Providence College. Wish she had more time here on earth, but reading all these tributes, it is clear she impacted all around her in such a positive way, God be with you Trudi, prayers to her family and all those who lost loved ones on 9/11.
Sharon Cerasoli, Friend
Sep 11 2006 12:21AM
I was cleaning out some old folders out of a file cabinet and I looked inside and there were some emails from Trudi and immediately my mind thought of her smiling face and her contagious laughter. Even though it's been four years, it seems like yesterday. I think about you throughout the year Trudi, and I know for many years to come. We will never forget you, or anyone else that passed away that horrific day. God bless you and your family. You are sorely missed.
Irene Morrison, Colleague
Sep 22 2005 4:00PM
I graduated from Saugus High School with Trudi in 1982. I remember her as friendly and outgoing during a time in life when not everyone is that way. High school girls can be mean and petty, but Trudi was one of those people who genuinely cared about people and was sincere and genuine. I just recently found out she was a 9/11 victim .... I wasn't able to attend our reunion and I cannot describe how sad I was when I found out. May she rest in peace.
Diana (Robinson) Ferry, Friend
Sep 7 2005 3:08PM
I was just pulling out summer clothes, and one of the things I grabbed out of storage was my navy blue t-shirt, which I absolutely refuse to throw away: 'Worldwide J&H; Day, May 11, 1995'. It was a day about helping others, and afterwards there was a big party on a docked boat at the Seaport. For some reason, Trudi is who comes to mind when I think of that day. She was very involved with J&H;, both businesswise and socially. I didn't know her very well, but think of her, Peter Moutos, Tom Celic, Monica Lyons and Marsha Rodriguez constantly. God bless you all.
Eileen Giordano, Colleague
Jun 1 2005 11:20AM
It wasn't until some time after 911 when I heard Trudi was sadly one of the many victims in the WTC. I was merely a classmate of Trudi's at Saugus High. We were not best friends but were friendly enough to talk when we saw each other at school and in the classroom. I do know that she was a great kid with many friends. I'm not surprised at all that she went on to be a leader at work. We had a moment of silence at our 20 year reunion for Trudi. I think of her every time I hear or see something concerning 911. We'll never forget her.
Bob Lessard, Friend
Oct 25 2004 4:52PM
I haven't added comments because I didn't feel worthy. However, I still think of Trudi often. I even have her business card on a cabinet door in my office next to the blue Marsh ribbon and the card that our memorial pins came on. I also have this saying 'yesterday is past, tomorrow is the future, but today is a gift, that's why it's called the present'. Every day is a gift for me and I so wish it was also for Trudi.
Denyce Codoni, Colleague
Feb 16 2003 4:50PM
As a MMC employee, I would like to express my condolences. My thoughts are with you and your familiy.
Paula Azevedo, Colleague
Jul 16 2002 1:02PM
I think of Trudi and all of our colleagues who we lost on that tragic day - those I did not have the opportunity to know, every morning when I put on my MMC Memorial Pin and were in proudly in their honor. Trudi was like a shining light. She sparkled and you saw and felt that sparkle the minute she entered the room. She was an asset to Marsh as a whole but also PCS. I always enjoyed seeing Trudi at various meetings and getting to spend time with her. Being a hopeless romantic , I so enjoyed hearing of the way her finance proposed to her. She was so in love and looking forward to her upcoming marriage. I remember the last time I was with Trudi - we were at a PCS meeting and Linda Iverson was standing there with us and she had to go into another meeting and she looked at me and said 'Go with Trudi and have a cocktail' which we did and I am so glad I did. Because she was the colleague I knew the best, I think of her at her last moments and the committment and dedication she displayed. Thinking of her along with all of the others helps me to keep perspective on what is really important in life. I will often say to other colleagues that I am particularly closed to and who are 'stressed' and 'challenged' over a particular issue - 'think of Trudi' while it is not my intent to make them sad, it is to snap them back into reality and show them at least they have the opportunity to make a choice.
Jackie Minch, Colleague
Jul 11 2002 12:24PM
When I think of Trudi, what I remember most is the emotional support she gave me when my wife of 34 years died in 1998. Even at the C@S dinner, she took me aside and we spoke for a short while and wound up crying in each other's arms. Trudi, we will miss you dearly and perhaps you and my late wife, Terri, will be lucky enough to run into each other in Heaven, where I am sure both of you must now be enjoying yourselves in God' light. Fondly, Frank Petito
Frank Petito, Colleague
May 13 2002 12:18AM
I think of Trudi as a friend even though my only connection with her was through the Company I work for. I first met her in Birmingham, AL where our Corporate Offices are located and later was able to spend a few days with her in New York. Upon meeting Trudi you just felt good. She also made you feel that you were important to her. She seemed to have an inner warmth that reached out and touched you. I don't believe anyone could be sad, angry or anything but happy around Trudi. I was hurt, angry and sad about the 9/11 evil occurrence, but when I learned that it had taken Trudi's life, I sat down and cried. I had lost a friend. It was already very personal, but became even more so when I knew it had not only taken so many lives of so many people, but took someone as sweet, caring and full of life as Trudi. I'm fortunate to have known her even for such a short time.
Maxine Martin, Friend
May 8 2002 3:05PM
Working in Private Client Services, in Morristown, NJ I met Trudi a few times and had spoken on the phone numberous times with her. We never failed to share in a laugh whether in person or on the phone. She was truly a very nice person and I will miss her. I am so glad I got the chance to meet Trudi. We lost a special person who enlightened many, many people. Our loss is heaven's gain.
Irene Morrison, Colleague
May 1 2002 11:49AM
Trudi and I went on a pitch to two principals of a financial advisory firm. It was the first time that we met and the first time that she met the client. She was so impressive that she beamed. Needless to say, she walked out with the two accounts, asked for an opportunity of the CFO to reach their investors and also asked him about his own insurance. That is not what was most impressive about Trudi, however. On the walk back to the office, she shared some of her experiences, gave me (one year at Marsh at the time) some advice, and complemented me on my performance in the meeting (Coming from her it really was a complement). Trudi was the type of employee we all strive to be. Knowledgeable, professional, honest, trustworthy. If she was half as good a person as she was a broker, this world has suffered a terrible loss for having lost her.
Anne Rappa, Colleague
Apr 4 2002 8:05AM