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A Smile Provided by Anthony Fallone

by on September 11, 2015

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What a funny guy.  Everyone who’s mentioned Anthony Fallone notes his affinity for spreading laughs, and it’s nice to be remembered for a universally desired trait.  While not a comedian by trade, Anthony still enjoyed sharing observations on absurdities.  Taking time to bring levity to those in one’s life is even more impressive than doing so professionally.  We’re all thankful to those who set out to make people chuckle without payment other than a pleased response. In Anthony’s case, that meant he had a successful career beyond capably completing his job description.

It sounds like a dream to exchange commercially in the sky.  Anthony lived it as a Cantor Fitzgerald bond broker on the 104th floor at 1 World Trade Center.  Even with a great career in a prime location, he was about more than thriving in business.  The focused worker was also serious about laughs, a hobby that he brought to others using what was then a novel system for sharing information.  The Queens native realized early that email is an effective way to expose people not in the room to one’s thoughts. The technology adapter wisely picked his spots.  Knowing when it’s appropriate to focus on spreading smiles is the key to simultaneously being a smart aleck and accomplished career man.

Being hustle-adjacent is a suitable residential option for busy pros.  Take New Yorkers who settle on that sliver to Manhattan’s right.  Anthony lived on Roosevelt Island, a residential oasis for those most comfortable living alongside the famous neighbor’s cacophony.  A little space from the noise makes it infinitely more bearable. Apartment life is typically relaxed for those in the city who are a tramway, deep subway ride, or circuitous car voyage from more recognizable destinations. Those who have settled on the land surrounded by the East River enjoy the charms of a relative urban oasis.  Visitors can find his name on a plaque there to commemorate someone who knew the value of stepping away from the frenzy found on that more prominent island.

The quest to know more is one we should never let end.  Take the example of a man who was learning when he wasn’t working.  The Hunter College student was attending night school to get the bachelor’s degree in economics he had started in the ’80s.  He gained more than college experience: Anthony met his wife Patricia there in 1984 before a career and caring for children got in the way of college credits.  He was on track to finish in December 2001.  She went on to receive her own degree along with his posthumously. The sheet with one’s name on it in script is the physical representation of dedication to wisdom.

Patricia has the diploma to remember him, which doesn’t ease the difficulties of persevering in his absence.  It’s tough to even think of coping with sudden loss.  Actually doing so is formidable enough personally before helping children do the same.  She knew facing such a brutal reality was crucial after instantly knowing her husband was gone.  Trying to understand that something will never make sense is always going to be a challenge for those enduring death.  The unimaginable can become real quite quickly.  Accepting that harsh reality is the key to moving forward.  Nothing is going replace those lost.  But that knowledge allows us to be thankful for what we had with those no longer at our side.

Anthony J. Fallone, Jr. was murdered at 39 at the hands of terrorists on September 11, 2001.  The engaging storyteller and admired classmate was also a beloved husband and father to four kids.  He was about so much more than a job, although he excelled at that, as well.  As a personal note, I’d like to thank whoever identified him by the nickname of “Tony Doogie” on his memorial page.

His office building’s footprint contains a tangible reminder of the man who worked over 100 stories above.  The thorough New Yorker is listed on panel N-51 of the 9/11 Memorial North Pool. And he’ll be remembered for more than the engraving, although it’s nice to have that on public display.  Like the diploma printed months after his passing, Anthony’s loved ones may encounter sadness upon seeing his name while simultaneously feeling grateful for the reminder of past moments together.  There will be sorrow at the jokes never told.  But remembering the ones he did share will hopefully offer a small respite.  Anthony seemed like he’d want people to revel in punchlines even through grief.  The challenge of doing so is precisely why it’s important.

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