Richard Bruehert

Richard Bruehert liked challenges. When he wanted to fly an airplane, he went out and took lessons. When he wanted to learn to sail, he did the same.

Bruehert, of Westbury, quit flying a year ago, after a year of training, because he thought it was too dangerous of a hobby to have with a wife and two young daughters.

He went on a friend’s sailboat early this summer and decided that sailing would be the perfect thing to do as a family. So, in August, he went to Virginia for three days of intensive sailing lessons and bought a sailboat on Sept. 7. The next day, he and a friend sailed from Connecticut to Long Island on the boat, which he named the Christina Danielle after his daughters.

Bruehert never got a chance to take his family out on the water. He was on a conference call on the 96th floor of Tower One on Sept. 11. Bruehert sent co-workers text messages on their pagers after the airplane hit below him, saying he was trapped. That is the last contact anyone has made with him. Bruehert, a vice president at Marsh & McLennan, was 38.

'His family made him happy,' said Bruehert’s wife of eight years, Jo Anne. 'He was the only person I know that likes going food shopping with the kids.'

Bruehert would be up first thing in the morning on Saturdays and Sundays, and while his wife was still in bed, he’d take Christina 6, and sometimes Danielle, 2, to the grocery store. While he didn’t like shopping, he liked the time alone with his kids.

When he’d return home, Bruehert would often have Christina by his side as he worked in the yard gardening.

'The whole reason he bought the boat was to do family things,' his wife said. 'I was away in August for about five days, he stayed home with the kids . . . He took Christina out shopping to let her pick out the lifejackets.'

Bruehert, who was vice president of the technology group at Marsh & McLennan, had dreamed of one day becoming chief executive of a company. In 1990, he graduated from Adelphi University in Garden City and, in May, he earned a masters of business from the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University in Brookville.

Bruehert met his future wife within a month after they both started working at the same department in computer security at MetLife in Manhattan in 1989. They were married in 1993. He joined Marsh & McLennan in 1997.

There was standing room only at a memorial Mass in Bruehert’s honor Oct. 4 at St. Brigid’s Roman Catholic Church in Westbury.

The sailboat, a 35-foot Hunter with two staterooms and a main salon, is back at the dealer in Milford, Conn., and Bruehert’s daughter Christina is angry that she’ll never get to sail with her dad.

'The baby, she doesn’t know, she’ll just sometimes hear a sound and say that ’Daddy’s home,’' his wife said. 'But Christina, she doesn’t want to be at home. ... She can’t understand why they can’t find Daddy.'

(c) 2001 Newsday, Inc. Reprinted with permission.www.newsday.com

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Rich...I will make my annual trip to the Shrine of St Joseph early tomorrow morning before the mass and ceremonies and plant a flag for you. Still missing you and can't believe its 15 years ago. I have said it all before but I see the girls continue to thrive and grow under Jo Anne's guidance into marvelous young adults. I still like to think you guide them as well from somewhere else. RIP buddy and ....first one to the bar up there is buying!!
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 10 2016 5:18PM
Rich...I will go to the Shrine of St. Joseph tomorrow morning and plant a flag with your name on it. I still miss you buddy and watch your girls from a distance knowing how proud Jo Anne is, and how proud you would be of them growing into beautiful young ladies achieving there goals at School, College and in life. I hope you are able to look down and guide them as I could not think of a better coach than you. Rest in Peace old friend until we meet in that great bar in the sky.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 10 2015 8:56AM
Rich, Not a day goes by where I don't think of you. You were always a gentlemen and it was an honor to have known you during those years we worked together at Marsh.
John C Brocker, Colleague
Sep 11 2014 10:04AM
Another year - I don't like that this is the day I think about you most. You and so many others that died that day are so much more than this day. Wish it could be different. We miss you!
Maggie Savoca, Family
Sep 11 2014 9:26AM
Rich here we are in 2014, the memories are still fresh at this time of year and wounds still hurt. I see from a distance that your girls under Jo-Anne's guidance are growing and blossoming into young ladies, and like you before them they will make a positive contribution to this world. They are your fingerprints on this world and I am pleased for all of your Family when I see how they are achieving. I am heartened, but sad we cant talk about it over a beer or two. I am a US Citizen now and when I took the pledge/oath I was thinking of you. 'Living Good in America' was ringing in my ears. Still miss you and your jokes after all these years. Rest easy my good friend
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 10 2014 4:18PM
To Bob Gerrard - I see your flag every anniversary at St. Joseph's and thank you for your friendship with Rich. To Rich - loving husband to my cousin, I thank you for the short time I knew you and wish I were standing next to you talking as we did at my parents 50th Wedding Anniversary so long ago. Your wife is lovelier than ever and your children have grown to be beautiful women. May you be resting well and thought of always.
Michael A. Castrilli Jr., Family
Sep 11 2013 9:16PM
Rich ...12 years are gone and it still seems like yesterday in some respects, but in other ways it seems like a lifetime ago for me. I keep in touch with Jo Anne and see that your girls are growing into very capable young women and excelling in all they do. I know you will be a very proud Dad indeed. I am finally becoming a US Citizen very soon, and I will think of you on the day when I take the oath. I will plant your flag at St Joseph's this evening as usual. I feel some peace there. Still missing you and the jokes.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 11 2013 10:47AM
I met you only once. Your Brother John brought you in to meet me at Scarlett O'Hara's. I believe your Dad was with you too. It was an honor to serve both of you.(John , too!) I'll never forget that day. John trying to get you on the phone. The phone calls never answered. It's hard to watch a good friend lose a brother live on TV. I know you will be always missed by your friends and family. I wish I had known you better! God bless you and yours. Always At The Helm, 'Capt' Tom
Capt Tom, Friend
Sep 12 2012 2:55AM
Rich...I got up this morning and was struck at how beautiful the day was, how blue the sky was and how similar it was to the day we lost you. I will go to the Shrine of St. Joseph today when its quiet and plant a flag with your name on to mark the great Patriot you were. When I am there I feel closer to you and feel some sense of peace. I still miss you and remember your fun and sense of humor. Remember to order the Guinness for me the day we meet again. Rest easy friend.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 11 2012 9:09AM
Hey Rich- The years keep ticking away - they tick away much faster now that I am older! We still miss you at every reunion. You're never forgotten and often remembered with a smile. The stories of you and your brothers growing up - make me laugh as I try and raise my 3 boys. Love you and miss ya! -M
Maggie Savoca, Family
Sep 11 2012 5:36AM
Daddy, I'm still sad that your gone. I know that your here with me, but it still hurts. Not having you around, I don't know what to do. I still cry about you. Having all my friends talking about there dad and hanging out with them. It makes me sad that I don't have my dad to do that with. I just want you here with me. To help me with stuff. To help mommy to. I just wish that plane never crashed through the building. Keeping you in my heart and trying to keep you alive to the family. I love you daddy. :( Love, your daughter, Danielle
Danielle Bruehert, Family
Oct 5 2011 9:33PM
10 years. It's strange how life goes on after so much tragedy. You are still missed and will always be remembered.
Maggie Savoca, Family
Sep 11 2011 6:18AM
Rich, I'll always cherish our friendship and the time we spent together sailing.
Bob Lorenz, Friend
Sep 10 2011 7:09AM
Rich as we come up to 10 years I want you to know I still miss you. The years don't make it any easier and 10 years is no different than 1 year, or 20 years. You are not here and that makes the world a poorer place. When its nice and quiet I will go to the Shrine of St Joseph this weekend and put a flag there for you and remember some of the other people at Marsh. Rest in peace Rich and keep the beer cold up there, one day I hope we meet again and can catch up, as we will have a lot to talk about.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 9 2011 1:24PM
5/1/11 Rich myself and a few friends were at the Philadelphia Philles game when the news came to us about the us raid in pakistan. It was realy something to see, the first reaction to the news the whole stadium was chanting USA USA USA and the players on the field had no clue as to what was going on. The game made national news. It made me very proud of our country we did the right thing. On this memorial day my family is remembering you. We miss your smile at the family reunion. Your Cousin Rob
Robert Hughes, Family
May 30 2011 10:26AM
With the news of Bin Laden this weekend, my thoughts turned to Rich. When his brother, Ed, retired from the Air Force, I joined Ed's niece, Rachael, and nephew, Travis, in a trek to Colorado to celebrate. There I met Rich. At night, for nearly a week, Rich, Ed, Travis, and I would play board or card games to pass the time. It got silly most nights and we laughed very hard and very loud. It was one of the best weeks of my life and I had hoped to all meet up again one day. When I got news that Rich had died, I was devastated. Even though, we were mere acquaintances, I was so angry that someone as awesome as he was had suffered. I hope his family is healing well and the news of Bin Laden's death brings something positive into their lives.
Sarah Diaz, Friend
May 2 2011 7:14PM
Rich..I am late adding my thoughts this year . I was in Cyprus on vacation and didn't have any email access. I saw the news broadcast from NYC, heard your name read out and then went out for a walk and spent the day with family. I still remember as do a lot of the old IBM team who are still left at the company. Rest in Peace Rich as when we meet again you can buy me a Guinness and I have some good jokes to tell.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 24 2010 9:47AM
It's hard to believe anyone could do such a thing to you and to this family. The people you've touched will never for get you Richie. I hope you're having fun up there.
James Hollywood, Family
Sep 11 2010 2:20PM
Hey, Richie! I think of you throughout the year, but especially today. I miss you. God Bless you.
Kathleen Hollywood, Family
Sep 11 2010 1:36PM
Richard, you were a man that I never had the pleasure of meeting, but I do have the pleasure of knowing your BEAUTIFUL family and WONDERFUL brother. I feel like I knew you through the amazing stories told about you! I am blessed to know your family and know that you live on in their hearts forever! God Bless you and keep you in his continued care! RIP Richard Bruehert, 9-11-2001
Susanne Caperton, Friend
Sep 11 2010 10:18AM
Hey Rich - It's another beautiful September day -just like the one you were taken. In some ways it's hard to believe that bad things like 9.11 happened - but then there is the hole in our family where you used to be. Life has gone on - the girls are beautiful - and growing more beautiful every time I see them. But we still miss you! Love you!
Maggie Savoca, Family
Sep 11 2010 9:37AM
Richie, Richie, Richie...so many memories. I miss the cards you would send me every occasion 'From your son, Rich'. Can't help but think of you on the 9th anniversary of 9/11.
Marie Costello, Friend
Sep 10 2010 7:40PM
So every year I read what people write to you, but have always found it hard to say what I have to say. I miss the phone calls from you at my birthday to tell me how much you missed me and how I was growing into such a beautiful young woman. Reading what my mom wrote about me always wanting to be around you, made me realize why I miss you so much. Its great having the girls soo much closer now, but everytime I see Chrissy I see you. You were an awesome uncle and a wonderful father to those girls. I always think about the last time I saw you and how you couldn't wait for the reunion the next summer to see us again. But it never came and I never heard from you again. It has yet to get easier, though I pray every year that it will. It still breaks my heart that Danielle will never have to the chance to really know you like we were all blessed to be able to do. I miss you and love you so much.
Katie Bruehert, Family
Sep 11 2009 11:00PM
Hey Rich, It's been eight years since the day they took you from us, but no matter how much time passes, you will never, ever, ever be forgotten. Christine and the girls send their love to your brave, beautiful girls (all 3 of them). From your old Puddn'headed friend, Mikey.
Mike Addiego, Friend
Sep 11 2009 5:41PM
8 years - how can it be? Each year it amazes me how much time has gone by - and how much we all still miss you. Your girls look great. I always think the best testament to your life is for me to live mine and enjoy it - which I do. But I still miss you and entertain the sadness when it comes. Rest easy, M
Maggie Savoca, Family
Sep 11 2009 4:51PM
I was just thinking of you today, Rich as I always do on this day. We had a meeting scheduled for 9AM on this day 8 years ago…I just ran a few minutes late that day. This day is always such a sad day. You were a great manager/boss and just a good person and you will always be missed.
Cindy, Colleague
Sep 11 2009 10:32AM
Richard, I worked with you briefly. I remember your cheerful greeting every time we met. Satish
Satish Vamburkar, Colleague
Sep 11 2009 9:05AM
Rich...8 years today, I cant believe. I still see you in my head as clear as day, and I still dont believe you are gone. I still talk to some of the guys at IBM and they all still remember you. You always had an profound effect on people whether it was doing business or having fun. I will do my usual thing today and go to the shrine of St Joseph to make sure you have a new flag by your name. Jo-Anne sent me a picture of the girls in the Christmas card last year. How they have grown, and how beautiful they are. I know you will be watching in over them and still a very proud Dad. Rest easy Rich, I still miss you buddy! Also I will become an American citizen soon.....and I can hear you say...'You're living good in America Bobby' in my head. I just wish I could hear it one more time for real. Bob Garrard
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 11 2009 8:32AM
I've never been one to publicly air my emotions, but as the clock approaches midnight, and 8th anniversary arrives, I just thought I'd share a few thoughts. I recently joined Facebook and was downloading some photos of you. Each picture brought back a memory. The camping trips we all took as teenagers, the parties, the McDonald's years, we had a lot of great times! I was quiet back then, and you always watched out for me, and I thank you for that. I will never forget the day we brought Brian home from the hospital, and you came over to see your nephew. You were sitting on the edge of the couch holding him as I took the photo. You decided to stand, and lost your balance. It was something we laughed about for years to come, but at the time, as you tried to keep from dropping him, as you fought to regain your footing, I think my life passed before my eyes. When Katie was little she always wanted you to hold her. She was such a little chatterbox, I think you were always relieved when she'd finally fall asleep on your lap. The last time I saw you, when you came down to Florida in the summer of 2001, you made me laugh as always. I remember going 1 to 4 with you and John drinking beer at the Conch House, and yet I was the tipsy one. I asked how you did it, and you laughed, put your arm around me and said, in true Bruehert fashion...years of practice babe, years of practice! I'm thankful for the late night talks we always had on the computer, and will always miss the insanity of those chats. I couldn't find any photos of you with Michael. You didn't know him as well as the other two, but you would be so proud of him. He joined the Army, and is in Afghanistan right now with the 82nd Airborne. Please watch over him, as he fights to avenge the terrorist attack that took you from us. Thoughts of you will always bring a smile : ) Much love...Barbara
Barbara (Bruehert) Joyner, Family
Sep 10 2009 11:50PM
Christina and Danielle, I've been thinking about you girls today. I lost my dad when I was five, so I know what it's like to be without a father. Just know that although he's not here with us in person, his spirit is still here.
Jeanie Rooney, Friend
Sep 10 2009 8:44PM
i wish u were here with me right now. i got braces on and they rly hurt. i wish u were here on my b-day, my first communion, the day i got my braces, and the days when i learned something new. but whenever i want u, ur never here. but everybody says u r in my heart forever and you'll never leave me. they also say that u will be safe in heaven. i always try not t worry but i do. i miss u daddy and i wish u were here with me so i could see what u look lik one more time. i'll miss u so much . i hope you will be in my dreams. love danielle ur daughter <3
danielle, Family
Apr 15 2009 8:56PM
Rich Another anniversary has come and gone. I couldn't watch any of the TV, so took the day off and painted my daughter's bedroom. It was theraputic, but didnt stop me thinking about you, your family and the tragic loss that day. I will go to the Shrine of St. Joseph and drop off your flag as I do every year, but I didnt do it on the 11th as they have services and I prefer the quiet time to reflect and remember, rather than get involved with the mainstream. I feel a little closer to you in the quiet time than the services and all that goes with them. At the end of the day you were a pretty simple guy who loved to laugh, loved his family, loved life and its challenges, valued friendship and loved your country. Even all the financial turmoil that is going on today is all just temporary wallpaper compared with your passing. I still miss you and I know the guys from IBM feel the same. Rest easy old friend.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 15 2008 10:23AM
Hey Richie- Listened for your name again this year - still miss you. Each September 11th I kind of go through what your last morning must have been like. For the past two years I've been in one of the kids' schools at 8:46 so usually find myself crying in front of someone I don't know. It's kind of embarassing but it gives me a chance to tell someone about you - how good you were, what a great family you have and how much I still miss you. Rest easy cousin - the wind is at your back.
Maggie Savoca, Family
Sep 11 2008 8:12PM
Hey Uncle Richie. It's been almost seven years since I sat at a service in your name. I'll remember that day forever because it was so hard. You were always in my thoughts, and today in school I googled myself for fun and so many pages came up with your name on them, so I took a peek. There are so many people that care about you, and to read the tribute I wrote when I was only eight made me cry. We always had a special bond, you being my godfather, and just a great uncle. I really miss you. Everyone still does. And I really hope you're resting easy. I'm turning fifteen in two months, and my memories from when I was little are getting vague, but I really hope I'll never forget the ones of you. I love you so much. Jessie. <3
Jessica Bruehert, Family
Apr 28 2008 4:28PM
I really miss you and I want you to come back. I never get to see you. I wanted you to be there on my First Communion. I was very upset when I heard that you died. I wish you were still down here with me all the time and I want you to help me learn how to do stuff. I want to go on vacations with you but that won't happen. Everyone in the family misses you. I wish you could always pick me up from school. You were there always for me when I was hurt. I want to give you presents on Fathers day but I can't because you died. I want to give you breakfast like we do to mommy on Mothers day. If I need help with something I want you to help me with it. If you were here right now you would help me with my homework if mommy was busy. We can't put cards in your stocking any more at Christmas and it really makes me sad because you're not with me. I really wish you were here. Love, your daughter, Danielle
Danielle, Family
Jan 2 2008 11:29PM
Rich, On this sad day, it's just your old buddy from MetLife letting you know that you will never, ever, ever be forgotten. You are in our thoughts often. It was and continues to be an honor to be counted among your friends. The family sends their love to you, and to JoAnn and the girls. From your old pudd'nheaded friend - Mikey.
Mike Addiego, Friend
Sep 11 2007 10:47PM
Hey Rich - Still missing you and wishing it wasn't so. They just read your name a little while ago - it always amazes me how long it takes to get to your name. It is so sad so many families grieve like ours. Just wanted to let you know - I still think of you and miss you.
Margaret Savoca, Family
Sep 11 2007 9:28AM
Rich Another year has gone by. Last year was the first time I went into work at NYC on 9/11, this year I will be in Virginia on business. So I am off to the shrine of St Joseph tonight to pay my respects and leave a flag for you. You are still in my thoughts. Rest easy my friend.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 10 2007 2:47PM
Rich...5 years have flown by. I want you to know that the guys at IBM still remember you, your presence, professionalism and skills at managing things and also your humor (I miss that most of all). I will call JoAnn to see how she and the girls are doing. Still miss you buddy and actually went to work in NYC on 9/11, its the first 9/11 I have done that since 2001. I just couldn't sit watching TV with all the names being read out again. I listened for yours last year, broke down and decided enough was enough. I did go to the shrine of St Joseph in the evening which has the local memorial and planted a flag for you. Amazingly they have all the previous ones I left still there, although the one from 2002 is more than a little threadbare now. I do it because I knew you as a great patriot. Rest easy Rich.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Sep 14 2006 12:14PM
Five years? How can that be? Still missing you...still remembering that day. I sit and watch the memorial shows and think that's not what Rich would want - just go out and live. I do. Tomorrow I will take Thomas to gymnastics - think about you - that's what you would do...live your life, enjoy your kids. Rest easy cousin.
Margaret Savoca, Family
Sep 10 2006 11:07PM
Still missing you. Life has gone on and it is good to see but we never forget what and who we lost on 9/11. Rest easy, Rich. Margaret
Margaret Savoca, Family
Sep 11 2005 7:30AM
You and I went to Baldwin High School together (Class of '81). It broke my heart to see your name on the list of decedents. My prayers go out to your family. Chris
Christine Durkee, Colleague
May 18 2004 4:55PM
Hey Rich- I was just outside thinking about what this night was like two years ago. All of us just going about our lives. You had sailed your new boat home over the weekend and had begun another work week. I can't remember if I realized then how good I had it. Not that things have really changed in my day to day life. I still have a great husband, two wonderful sons and am also 'living good in America'. But there's definitley a sadness and void since you left us. You're not at the family reunion - you weren't at Bernie's wedding - in spirit I know but trust me, it's not the same. It helps to see that others miss you. I hope you are resting easy. I hope you know how much you were loved. If the measure of a well-lived life is leaving it better for you having been there - well then you have lived well. Take care cousin, Margaret
Margaret Savoca, Family
Sep 10 2003 6:56PM
Rich, you were one of my high school classmates, all through Baldwin Senior High School. I remember you as a nice regular guy, someone I'd chat with before class in the classes we were in together. I'm sorry that this happened to you, and I will never forget you.
Liz McMullen, Friend
Sep 10 2003 3:23PM
Rich....It's nearly 2 years since you left us. The guys from the IBM team still miss you and hardly a day goes by without your name being mentioned by one of the team, or a thought in my head about you. God bless you, JoAnn and the girls and all of your Family at this time. I will be at the Shrine of St Joseph in Gillette NJ at some point on 9/11 and I will take along the Stars and Stripes to put next to your name at the memorial and remember the proud American patriot you always were and always will be. No doubt you will laugh at why an Englishman should do that because 'We kicked you guys out in 1776'. I miss those long conversations about heritage, history and politics and how they always ended with a joke and your sense of humor about England coming second in the War of Independence. I still hear you say 'living good in America Bobby'. I still am, but it is a sadder and poorer place because you are not here with us. Rest easy Rich. Bob Garrard
Bob Garrard, Colleague
Sep 9 2003 3:37PM
I met Rich Bruehert while we were undergraduates at Adelphi University in the Computer Science curriculum. Although we were more acquaintances than friends, I could tell that he had a knack for the subject and at times we would collaborate on projects. I was most sorry to hear of his going from us on that fateful September morning. From what I've read, it sounded like he had everything to live for. Now because of the misdeeds of some morally bankrupt animals, his life is over. I offer my condolences to his family and also pray that his soul is resting in peace.
Nicholas Koliarakis, Friend
Mar 27 2003 8:03PM
Rich - we're at war today after trying deperately to negotiate peaceful terms with the terrorists who have robbed us of so many good people. Perhaps you in heaven can understand why and how these people can do such horrible things to all the innocents in the world and I beg you to help us to understand. I know heaven awaits all of us who 'hang in there', but sometimes it's so hard. You know Mel is undergoing another operation today for her wrist. Please use your influence with our Lord so she'll be ok. She too, like your Joanne, has two little girls to raise and believe me she needs both hands to do it. I speak from experience, after all I raised four. We had a wonderful St. Patrick's Day celebration up at Aunt Rose's. Your mom was there and I think for a little while she had some laughter and smiles in her life. There has been just too many crosses for her lately. She's very worried about Mel who has become the daughter she never had. She needs her to be ok, so please beg God to help. You're our angel now so watch over us all and our young men who are fighting this war against terrorism. Let it be finished quickly and let our boys come home to their families soon. Thanks Rich, I love you. Aunt Jo
Josephine Hughes, Family
Mar 20 2003 3:03PM
You were all around us, that day of the ceremonies. No doubt in my mind you were one of the 2,700 angels flapping their wings that day. You are forever in our hearts, and we will never forget. 'The Angel Connection Group'
Charlene, Friend
Nov 3 2002 11:02PM
Its hard to believe its been just over a year now, you're in my thoughts constantly. I miss you and Dad so much, but I try to keep myself occupied to hide the emotions. Why did it have to be you? I'll always remember our lives together and do my best to help Jo and the girls. I love you, Bill
Bill, Family
Sep 21 2002 9:30PM
While looking at this tribute I recognized the name from the ABC news special...9/11/02. It was a beautiful story about Richard's family. I work in IT at a sibling company, Mercer Human Resources. You should know that colleagues from around the world are thinking of him, his family, and his coworkers. God Bless
David Sowder, Colleague
Sep 11 2002 10:42PM
JoAnne and I were email pals over a number of years.. we shared so much over the email and had a great deal in common. I just want to say JoAnne that I have thought of you and the girls often during the last year and will especially be praying for you on Tuesday when we hold a moment's silence here in the UK. Your email friend, Glenda Young
Glenda Young (UK), Friend
Sep 9 2002 11:11AM
Rich stopped in my office every morning on the 96th floor. He always had something funny to report. We worked together on the same project for many months and became friends. Rich loved his girls - talked about his daughters and his wife all the time. I miss his great sense of humor. He was so excited about buying the boat and becoming a 'certified' sailor. He was really looking forward to getting his family on that boat and having great adventures on the water. He is missed at Marsh. Its hard to believe he's gone. My deepest condolences to his family.
Eileen McGuire, Colleague
Jul 24 2002 10:33PM
He fixed things he worked in his garden
lindsey, Friend
Jul 20 2002 12:07AM
JoAnne and I were friends back in college, and have recently gotten back in touch. Unfortunately, I did not have the opportunity to meet Rich. But, after hearing about him, and reading about him, I now feel cheated, because I will never have the chance to know him. Those who did, though, have lost a wonderful son, brother, father, husband, relative, colleague, and friend, and the world has lost an incredible human being. I am sure he is looking out for everyone still, from Heaven, watching over all those he loved, and who loved him.
Lynn Pace, Friend
Jun 22 2002 2:18PM
The first time I met Rich, I couldn't see him through the shrubs that separated our yards. I just heard this voice saying hello. As usual, he was working on his house. I swear to you, he could have built that house from the ground up. We slowly made our way down to the thinnest part of the shrubs, talking. I had met Joanne a few days earlier (she was pregnant with Christina at the time). I remember thinking, 'So much for the unfriendly New York stereotype.' In those days we just spoke casually across the fence. Rich had a very dry sense of humor, and was a huge tease. The first few times we spoke we forgot each other's names. But once Christina was born, the friendship began to solidify. She was a joy to behold. And much to everyone's surprise, our dog, Jack, adored her. Joanne and Rich do not have a dog and, frankly, they didn't need one because Christina and Jack were best buds. Many a morning a very young, toddling Christina would have to pet him over the fence. Poor Rich and Joanne! She would fuss if she didn't get to give him lots of pets and hugs and treats. Of course, as soon as she was soundly on her feet, she had to come across the fence. I have often wondered what Rich thought seeing his little girl, daddy's girl, so willing to play with an 85 lb. Shepherd/Dobie mix. It seems like yesterday I could hear Rich's powersaw and Christina's baby laughter. Once Rich finished putting in the windows I told him I didn't think my weekend mornings would be complete unless I heard his powersaw. Such a grin he gave me!!! We grilled burgers in August last year. The girls were running around with Jack. Rich did his best to convince my husband, Carl, that he could install the 24 windows we need to replace. Rich was being such a pill that day! I think of that day, remembering the sunshine, the girls laughter, the normalcy of eating burgers and drinking a cold beer. I so miss what I call 'Rich sounds' -- the hammer, the powersaw. I miss seeing him pick the weeds from his yard. I miss seeing him with Christina or Danielle in his arms. Rich was so proud of his home and his family. He was a true self made man. Endlessly curious, he was the epitome of the hard working American who can accomplish anything if he works hard. Joanne is truly amazing. She has dealt with this with so much courage and class. I know that Rich would not have been surprised. Rich must be so proud of her. I see Christina and Danielle most days. Christina still misses her Daddy, but she and I have talked often about the fact that he is still with her and that he is watching over her. She really would like to talk to him, and is disappointed that God does not have a telephone number. Danielle took me by surprise a couple of months ago and asked me where Daddy was. I told Danielle that he was in Heaven. He truly is. Penny Bice
penny bice, Friend
Jun 20 2002 10:38AM
Richard Bruehert was my godfather.He was a great man.He had a lot of courage.Even though it has been 8 months,I still miss him a lot.He was brave and I personally think that he was the best man ever.He was only 38 when he died.I loved Richard Bruhert and I want whoever is reading this for you love him to.So lift up your hearts not only to Richard Bruehert but to everyone who died in the September 11th attacks.
Jessica Bruehert, Family
May 11 2002 8:06PM
Richard Bruehert was my daddy we went shoping together i loved it.We went bike riding together to that was fun.
christina, Family
May 11 2002 7:57PM
The first time I met Rich, he was interviewing for a job at MetLife. I was asked to sit in, as the position was probably going to report to me. Anyone who knew Rich's technical ability and knows mine will laugh hysterically at the mere concept of me interviewing him on anything technical...he forgot more stuff than I'll ever know! It didn't take long to realize what a sharp guy and hard worker Rich was, as anyone who has worked with him can attest. The thing is, though, that his knowledge and his expertise, although highly impressive, are not the things I'll always remember him by. (Oh man, how that hurts...'remember him by'...I can't believe that I can't just call him or try to schedule a dinner together with our families....) We worked together as a team, he and I. But much more importantly, we became friends. After he and JoAnne started dating, I couldn't be happier for the both of them. They were both hooking up with winners. Our friendship lasted beyond his tenure at MetLife, and although we weren't in close contact on a daily basis after he moved on, whenever we did see each other or speak, it seemed like we had seen each other last week. Whenever Rich thought someone was not thinking clearly, or was not using logic, he would call them 'pudd'nheads.' Now, this may be small in the grand scheme of things, but every time he said it, I smiled until I began saying it too. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't find myself affectionately calling someone I know a pudd'nhead. It's just something he and I did as friends. I still do it, and in some small way, I hope he hears me saying it, because I say it as a tribute to a friendship that endures beyond when we worked together, and beyond the date of September 11, 2001. It endures always. The last time we saw each other was at his house, in February of 2001. His two beautiful girls were meeting my 4 year old daughter. Every night when I put her to bed, I think of Christina and Danielle, and how unbelievably brave JoAnne is. I know JoAnne will say she has to be, but that doesn't make it any easier. She is quite a lady. Rich would be (and IS) proud of her. I am not ashamed to say I was in tears several times in the days following the tragedy when I learned Rich would not be around to exchange emails, phone calls, or the often-planned-but-too-seldom-executed get togethers. I know he is watching over JoAnne and his two precious girls, with his Dad looking over his shoulder. I just hope every once in awhile, he can hear an old friend affectionately calling somebody a pudd'nhead....and knowing it's just me remembering how much I loved him. Until I see you again, my friend, may God Bless you and JoAnne, Christina, and Danielle. Christine, Maggie and I send all our love to JoAnne and the girls... Love, Mikey
Mike Addiego, Friend
Apr 23 2002 1:46PM
Richie, There is soo much I want to tell you, but you have heard it all before..I talk to you all the time. I know that you and Dad are together, but call me selfish, we all just wish you were both still here with us. To think of all the things I would do differently, if given a 2nd chance, I would drive myself insane, so I just want you to know this.... We all miss you terribly, and that I Love you.....I know the relationship we had, was never one that wasnt BUMPY, but it was still there. I think back a lot, on the last family Reunion, and taking the kids fishing...you were just oo funny....all tangled up in the fishing line, while trying to get Christina's pole to work. The look you gave me, when I got it all fixed and ready to go, within 2 minutes time!!!' How did you do that' was all you could say. I just laughed. I want you to know too, that I will be taking the girls fishing again this year, and hopefully many more to come, along with Jess and Sammy, and that I will be thinking of you every minute we are out there.Maybe we will even CATCH something this time!!!!! Jess and Sammy ask about you often I try to explain the best way I can, what happened, but how can you explain to an 8y/o and 6 y/o something, you dont understand yourself???? I just tell them, that they can talk to you anytime, because I know you are listening. Love, Melanie
Melanie, Family
Apr 22 2002 8:21PM
Hey Rich- I dreamt of you the other night. We were sitting at your dining room table and I was teasing you that in spite of your best efforts you'd always be the 'nice' Bruehert brother. Not that I don't love your brothers or think they're nice, I do, but somehow I always thought you wanted to be a little edgier or a little cooler like them. You were teasing me back for always hightailing it off to a corner at the family reunion with a book. To which I made my typical reply that I didn't know you could read. We weren't really friendly as young cousins, you growing up on The Island and my family being from New Jersey. Uncle Jimmy Hollywood always used to say he came to New Jersey one day and it was closed. I don't know - he thought it was funny. But we had the reunions - and thank God because that's where so many of us really got to know each other. It's where you took enough time to come over to me, reading in a corner, and strike up a conversation. A conversation that would turn into a true friendship. There's been weddings and Christenings and funerals. I can remember the Christmas party at your house the year before Anthony and I got married, you proudly showing off your new bride and your new home. Over the years I saw that home and you change. Every year you'd do a room and it seemed every year you were trying something new - for play, at home or at work. Always growing and always enjoying it. When I was at your house last fall the house was kind of done and it looked beautiful. You looked happy though I knew you weren't just going to kick back and do nothing. And I just got used to the thought of having you and your family and Jim and Bill and their families in my life. We had some great times together the eight of us and the kids getting together for dinner once in awhile. It never would have happened if you and JoAnne hadn't orchestrated it. I remember you telling me about the flying lessons and me sarcastically asking, 'Who the hell would fly with you?' Not rising to the bait you matter-of-factly said, 'JoAnne said she'll go up with me when I get my license.' And I'm sure she would have if you hadn't decided on some other hobby - sailing - you just blow me away. Always changing always making time for everything school, work, family, friends and enjoying it. After it happened Rich, I felt like I couldn't breathe. I mean the whole thing is so unbelievable as it is - but then how could someone I love be gone. Someone so good. Someone so young and full of promise. I've said to Anthony, 'You know, I feel robbed of the opportunity of growing old with him. I can't imagine how JoAnne feels.' Because I thought that you'd always be there Rich. I thought we had 1st Communions and Sweet 16's, dinners and more weddings and even funerals (but not yours). I thought I'd be sitting up on those freaking Catskill Mountains complaining about my dentures and arthritis while you tipped back a cold one and smiled. God willing I'll grow to be an old woman but I'll never get to see you age. Age as your girls grow. I don't know how she is doing it but when I talk to her, JoAnne is surviving. And I know she has to for herself and for the girls but not everyone is as strong as she is. Be proud. And your girls Rich, what could I tell you that you don't already know? Christina is a doll - she's been talking like a 40 year-old since she came out of the womb. She looks just like you Rich - I don't know how I'll look at her and not cry, but I will. You and JoAnne know what a beautiful child she is smart, funny - assertive - she knows what she wants and she asks for it. You done good kid. Danielle, my God, she's just a baby and reminds me so much of JoAnne. When I went to see them after the tragedy they even had the same haircuts! Cute as a button she is. So that's it. I don't know, Rich I feel like a can breath again but things will never be the same and that has been hard to accept. I miss you desperately and hope that you know that I love you. I feel the best way I can honor your life is by living mine - waste no time on the unnecessary - make enough time to play. May the wind be always at your back cousin, Margaret
Margaret, Family
Apr 21 2002 4:51PM
I went to grad school at CW Post with Rich. I often heard about his family and have now had the pleasure to see and hear from them through email. Thanks to Rich I made it through grad school! I was down to my last few credits with no time left to finish and did I mention I was pregnant! I felt horrible and tired. I wanted to do everything yet seemed to be accomplishing nothing. Thanks to him, our 'study' group excelled. I not only got through grad school, I got two As, laughed, and made a wonderful friend. I truly miss him. He took care of us girls in the group, even walked us to our cars.
Jen-i DeBetta, Friend
Apr 10 2002 4:26PM
Rich, your life's work was to raise a happy family with Jo Anne by your side. You did just that, until circumstances tore you away from them. Your legacy will carry on, though. Jo Anne and the girls will carry your name and never forget you. Their love will sustain you until you all are once again reunited. In kind, they will grow stronger knowing that you still love them too. I will miss you my friend.
Manny Castro, Friend
Apr 10 2002 2:22PM
Rich...your friends at IBM miss you greatly. You had a great way of doing business, always tough but fair and always with honor and a sense of humor. I think we miss that the most, the boyish humor and one liners. If it is quiet and I am on my own in the office, I can still hear the 'one liners' like: 'Livin good in America Bobby' and 'Show me the money Bobby', When I hear this I feel near to you and you are not lost to us, just sitting in the next room, before we get there. I also now know what a great Family man you were. If it is possible, I know you will be watching over them now and looking after them all. Rest easy Rich.
Bob Garrard, Friend
Apr 9 2002 3:16PM
daddy was very nice to me. i miss him. every time i cry about something and it's not about daddy i cry because i realy miss him. i always ask mommy if they found all of the bad guys yet. i love you daddy.
Christina, Family
Apr 7 2002 4:58PM
Rich, although we never have met, I feel I know you since the 9/11 tragedy. Through the past few months with my contact with your wife, I have learned so much about you and your life together. If there was a way you could read this, I would say this to you.....you would be so proud of your wife and kids. Jo Anne has carried herself with grace and dignity and would make you so proud. I know she thinks about you everyday, and I know you are her special angel guiding her and girls, everyday. May the Love of our Lord and Savior have granted you peace during those last moments, and may you be resting in our Eternal Father's arms. Charlene in TN
Charlene, Friend
Apr 7 2002 1:30AM
Richie, I imagine you were met by your Dad, my Dad, and Uncle Jimmy Allen. That picture brings a little comfort when I can't make sense of loosing you. I wish I had told you that I admire and respect you. I do. As the reunion approaches, I think of you more each day. There's part of me that looks forward to seeing you there, even if it's through your Mom, your brothers, and your girls. I love you, and I miss you. Kathleen
Kathleen Hollywood, Family
Apr 6 2002 11:00AM
We were all together at mom and dad's house in New Jersey on September 9th. This was actually weekend number 2 in a row that we were all together in NJ. Rich hated the long ride out to NJ and we hated the long ride to Long Island, but once we were all together we had fun. Rich was generally quiet. He always had a smile on his face and more than anything he loved his family. He was a devoted son. His dad had died less than a year ago (November 2000) and we knew that Rich missed him very deeply. After his dad's death he took over as financial advisor for his mom and was there for her on a weekly basis. Rich loved going on the annual family outtings with his fammily. He was very close to his brothers. We enjoyed watching his interaction with his family. They are a jovial bunch. Wonderful people! Because of distance we were never as close as we would have liked, especially to be with the kids. We never knew until the memorial Mass about how much Rich loved taking Christina food shoping. We never knew about how he and Christina would ride bikes together around the neighborhood. We knew about the snow shoveling with Christina and the gardening and we knew how much he loved his children just by watching him watch them. Susan and I think and speak about Rich often among ourselves. Sue remarked about how on September 9th she observed Rich watching Danielle (his youngest daughter) open and close the French doors leading out to mom & dad's deck. How this little 2 year old was experimenting with how the door locked. And Sue said 'you had to see the look of love and pride on Rich's face as he watched his daughter open and close that door'. I enjoy watching the home movies we have of Rich and every movie has Rich keeping a close watch on his kids. How he loved his daughters! As I am typing this with a mixture of tears and smiles Sue told me another story about Rich. We were all at cousin Carolyn's wedding. While everyone was up dancing Rich was at the table fumbling with something on his lap. Sue went over to the table and aked Rich what he was looking at. He had that usual Rich grin on his face. He was looking through Haloween pictures of the kids. Typical Rich - always thinking about his girls. I worked in Tower 2. I was late that day and from the bus I saw what had happened. Sue and I were talking on the phone and watching what was developing (Sue watching on TV at the house and me stuck on a bus across the river)we prayed for Rich that day. We hoped for him in vain. I pass the site of Ground Hero (as Cardinal Egan calls it) every day. I work downtown and there is a tremendous sense of loss. Not just for the buildings but for the thousands of people who are no longer there. The memorials decorate Broadway (the canyon of heros) and our family, friends, coworkers and neighbors will NEVER be forgotten! I pray for the whole family every day and now as I pass the former site of WTC I say extra prayers for Rich and all the people who were lost that day and the surviving family. They did not die in vain. Each father, mother, son and daughter was a hero to someone. Rich is a hero to his wife and his daughters, his mom and his brothers. They too remain in my thoughts and prayers every day. He worked hard to give his family the best. He left them and the world a wonderful legacy. Christina and Danielle will always know how much their daddy loves them. We will keep his memory alive and his smiling face (smiling over his children) is how Sue and I will alwyas remember him. Eternal rest grant to Richard O Lord and let Perpetual Light shine upon him. May the Divine assistance be always with him and may the souls of all the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen.
Edward & Susan Monti, Family
Apr 6 2002 9:10AM
Rich, I miss you. When I cross the street I think I see you. When I'm sad I think I feel you. When I remember the times we had together I cry. I cry now as I go on now with my family and life. I think I see and feel you. I know I love you. Jimmy
Jim Hollywood, Family
Apr 5 2002 12:38PM
Richie, I don't think a day goes by as I travel to work and pass the site that I don't think of you, Joanne and the girls. I'll never stop conversing with you silently as I say my prayers because I truly believe you're there in heaven. Maybe what you couldn't accomplish here on earth, you'll be able to in heaven. We'll talk again tonight. I love you sweetheart.
Aunt Jo, Family
Apr 5 2002 11:07AM
I miss the times we would have had, growing old together, he had told me he wanted to start camping like we did as kids, i definitely would have got a thrill sailing with him, going to our childrens weddings, him just calling for some advise on a project he was working on. I will truly miss the life we would have had. I love you rich always
Bill, Family
Apr 4 2002 8:28PM