Joel Miller

He loved both the dusky mystery of religion and the unblinking logic of computers, and Joel Miller found his way between the two, working at Marsh & McLennan as a disaster-recovery technology specialist, raising a family, enjoying a weekly poker game with friends from his synagogue in Baldwin, on Long Island, and once a week joining in early-morning prayer services, taking a later train to his office in the World Trade Center. Last year he found a way to combine computers and religion, signing up for online courses offered by the Jewish Theological Seminary on topics like the value of prayer, said his wife, Marjorie.

His first wife died of cancer in the early 1990's. Five years ago he married Marjorie, who had been president of the synagogue and had been widowed. They combined their families — three boys: Adam Miller, Maxwell Sivin and Justin Sivin — and moved into a new house together.

'It was a blessing, to be so happy and to have that second chance,' Mrs. Miller said. 'Every night we'd laugh and say we just can't believe it.' Her husband, who was 55, would tell her, 'You make my heart smile.'

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

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Thinking of all my colleagues lost that day. Joel was such a great guy. Hoping his family and friends have found peace.
Natalie Augustin, Colleague
Sep 11 2013 4:34PM
Remembering our discussions on job scheduling software with you and Tom Sgroi (data center at 1166). You were a great human being. May you rest in peace.
Dino, Colleague
Sep 11 2011 11:52PM
I worked in the same group as Joel at Citibank for a couple of years in the mid-1980s (I'm afraid I only just heard, nine years later, that he had been among the lost on 9/11). Though I never knew him terribly well, he was unfailingly pleasant and professional, and always had that twinkle in his eye. He and another colleague and I would frequently have lunch together, and I remember the playful but gentle banter between them on the relative merits of the Rangers and the Islanders. Not being a hockey fan myself I had little to add, but always enjoyed the back and forth. May Joel's memory continue to be a blessing.
Paul Nadler, Colleague
Sep 20 2010 12:29PM
Another year has flown by. Now it's 9 years since I felt your goodbye kiss before you went to work that day. The boys are all grown and married now. You have missed so much. Everytime I feel sorry for myself, I feel worse for you and all our friends at MMC that died with you. I am in touch with some of the guys who were lucky enough to be late that day. AND...I have become friends with so many of the other's family members. When ever I think I couldn't possibly shed another tear, they flow again. I miss you so much. You are MY hero. Love, Margie
Margie Miller, Family
Sep 10 2010 11:25PM
Joel was one of the most polite and kind people I ever met. He had a wonderful smile that so warmed my heart. I sure wish I had known him longer and better. He is still sorely missed.
Rihard Sloan, Family
Mar 30 2009 7:55PM
Margie, I always think of you and the boys on this day. My heart ached for you then and I hope you, Maxwell and Justin have weathered this terrible storm with the characteristic love and humor I always remember your having. Best wishes always, from your 'former family' member, and long ago friend. Bev Wiegler Frenchboro Maine
Beverly Wiegler, Friend
Sep 11 2008 9:45AM
Joel we might have never met one another but I know your cousin Jared Rosenblum really well. When I found out that you were one of the many people killed in the September 11th attacks my heart felt like it was going to explode. I know that your family and friends expecially Mr Rosenblum all miss you a lot and wish that you were still here today. May the heavens you now rest in bring peace into your soul and may the tears that fall from your loved ones eyes and those of your friends bring back memories of those times you shared together. Rest in peace we miss you lots
Jennifer Weisel, Friend
Oct 29 2002 8:05PM
Joel we might have never met one another but I know your cousin Jared Rosenblum really well. When I found out that you were one of the many people killed in the September 11th attack my heart felt like it was going to explode. I know that your family and friend expecially Mr Rosenblum all miss you a lot and wish that you were still here today. May the heavens you know rest in bring peace into your soul and may the tears that fall from your loved ones eyes and those of your friends bring back memories of those times you shared together. Rest in peace we miss you lots
Jennifer W, Friend
Sep 26 2002 4:50PM
As a member of the same congregation and as a poker buddy, I got to know Joel pretty well. He never had a harsh word for anyone, even those I knew he didn't care for. He refused to say anything that would reflect badly on someone else. He was always cheerful, no matter what his day had been like. He was a pleasure to be around. He was a pretty good poker player too.
Herman Charlip, Friend
Jul 18 2002 11:13PM
Not a day goes by that my husband Ronnie and I don't shake our heads in disbelief that Joel is really gone. Margie is my best friend. We were both widowed and remarried to members of our congregation. I stood up for Margie at her wedding to Joel.Margie and Joel, like myself and Ronnie,found a rare second chance at happiness. I will never forget sitting next to her and watching the towers tumble to the ground. I can only hope she finds peace and comfort knowing how much she was adored by Joel. Ronnie and I miss Joel every single day. He was very knowledgable on so many subjects. I often would call and ask him questions about my computer or religion. This terrible tragedy has left a void in all our lives.We miss you Joel.
Jeanne Siegel-Goldfeder, Friend
Jul 16 2002 4:04PM
As these days and months have quickly passed by, it's still unbelievable to me that I will no longer be able to share my life with the man I so deeply loved. Joel was reserved, had a quick wit, was passionate about learning and was a loving father and husband. He was a loyal friend, a devoted son and brother and my soulmate. The pain seems to have deepened since September, perhaps because the shock has worn down and the reality of his fate has set in. Joel was my second chance, my foundation, my best friend and the man of my dreams. I have to believe he was watching over Justin at his college graduation last month and will be watching Adam get married this summer. I have to believe that he will be beaming next spring when Maxwell finishes law school. I have to believe that one day I will again be in his arms. I know that his life was special not just his death. I know that he was loved, and he knew it too. May he and all his friends rest in peace. Love always and forever, your wife Margie
Margie Miller, Family
Jul 3 2002 12:21AM
I am Margie's first cousin. Joel and Margie were so happy to have found each other. At their wedding, my son Jared Rosenblum played and sang a song that he and Margie wrote, called 'You're My Love, My Life'. My son spoke some of the words at Joel's memorial service. His barbershop quartet sang 'I Believe', which touched all of the 800 or so of the people at the service. Joel and Margie were especially kind and gracious to let my son live with them as their '4th son'. Jared is teaching music in a school close to their home. Jared loved the closeness of the family. Joel (and Margie) treated Jared as one of their own. I never had a chance to thank Joel. My last words to him were, 'don't you feel like a sitting duck'? We will never be the same. Jared and I miss him everyday. Thankfully it brought Margie and I even closer and I will be there for her and the children. Phyllis
Phyllis Rosenblum Lane, Family
Jul 2 2002 6:24PM
I was Joel's colleague in a subsidiary company for over a year. The month before he was killed I came to work at Marsh, and he and I worked very closely during that time. The joyful center of his life was his family. Joel was quiet and reserved, but his face would light whenever he spoke of his children. It was clear he not only loved them to bits, but enjoyed them. He always spoke of his wife with delight. The pleasure and pride his wife and children gave him were always fresh for him. All this was apparent from casual remarks and bits of conversation. Joel was forthright, considerate, skilled at his job. Whenever I think of him, I hear his voice.
Walter Lawn, Colleague
Jul 2 2002 9:35AM
Marge, We met you at the May 30th Ground Zero ceremony. We are both deeply sorry for your loss. As you know Joanne lost her brither Michael Sorresse, and he was also an MMC employee. We read Joel's biography, and we are certain that he was a very good person. We will keep your family in our prayers. Jim and Joanne Messina
Jim and Joanne Messina, Friend
Jun 4 2002 12:53PM
Joel was one of the nicest persons that I worked with. He was always friendly and helpful. I am deeply saddened be his loss. Rose Eugene, 4/8/2002
Rose Eugene, Colleague
Apr 8 2002 11:13AM
I only met Joel once, and it occurred in early September 2001. Joel had just begun assisting our organization, the Guy Carpenter office in Philadelphia, with the creation and implementation of a plan to test our disaster recovery readiness. Joel immediately impressed my colleagues and me with his professionalism. He was also friendly and likable. My colleagues and I were shocked to learn of his fate, and we are deeply saddened by his loss. I can only imagine how much worse it must be for those who knew him for an extended period.
Chuck Klaniecki, Colleague
Apr 4 2002 1:37PM