Lorisa Taylor

Lorisa Taylor and her husband, Frank, celebrated their seventh anniversary on Sept. 10. It was a quiet, homey affair, in contrast with the previous Saturday, when they got a baby-sitter for their three daughters and went dancing to mark the occasion. Taylor, 31, loved dancing to R&B.; She danced so much that night that she had to take her shoes off to walk back to the car.

So on the day of their anniversary proper, Lorisa picked up a DVD to watch, and Frank came home with cake and champagne. They passed out sparkling cider to the girls - Tatiana, 11, Imani, 4, and Cyann, 3, - so they could join in the party. 'We toasted to seven years, and we toasted to just having our little family,' her husband said.

From her children to her burgeoning career, Taylor had a lot to celebrate. An aggressive businesswoman, she enjoyed the challenges of her job at Marsh & McLennan, where she tailored personal insurance plans to the needs of a high-end clientele of wealthy individuals and families. 'She didn't like getting stagnant,' said her mother, Geneva Dunbar. 'She was a woman who knew what she wanted to do.'

Taylor's determined nature manifested itself early. She was a tomboy who loved baseball and played it with the boys, both in the streets of Flatbush and as a slugger with the Marine Park Little League. 'As a teenager she was headstrong,' said Dunbar. 'My husband would tell her to do one thing, and she would do the opposite.'

After attending the State University College of Agriculture and Technology at Morrisville, she returned to Flatbush and took a job as a broker in Manhattan. But money wasn't what drove Taylor. She treasured her relationships. 'I bent over backwards to make my wife happy,' said her husband, 'and the gift she gave me back was unconditional love. There was nothing left undone between me and her.'

Outgoing and affectionate, she was always reaching out to people, he said. Where other adults would cross the street to avoid the groups of teenagers hanging on the corner, Taylor would just walk on by and say hello. 'She got a kick out of it,' said her husband. 'The kids on the block loved her.'

At home, Taylor enjoyed spending time with her daughters and made frequent visits to her mother, who lived just eight blocks away. 'She would come in the door with that big smile and greet me with a kiss,' Dunbar said.

The couple was running late on Sept. 11, so Taylor insisted on walking to the subway while her husband dropped the girls off at school. Taylor leaned into the family van to distribute hugs and kisses, giving her husband a peck on the cheek. 'Get back over here and give me a real kiss,' he told her, and she did.

Taylor rode the subway into Manhattan with her mother that day. Dunbar had been out of town on vacation for a week, so her daughter filled her in on all the anniversary festivities before getting off at the World Trade Center to head up to her job on the 94th floor of the north tower. Less than an hour later, the first plane slammed into the building.

The family initially tried to shield Taylor's three daughters from the truth, a difficult job given the ubiquity of footage from the attacks. 'My little 4-year-old ... saw on TV,' Frank Taylor told ABC News the day after the attacks. 'She knows something happened to Mommy's building.'

In the days that followed, Taylor's husband and parents plastered New York with 'missing' fliers. The posters yielded more media inquiries than information about her whereabouts. Atfirst the attention was welcomed: Dunbar appeared on 'America's Most Wanted,' and pictures of her daughter made the front page of papers as far away as Minneapolis. But as time passed with no word of Taylor's whereabouts, Dunbar found that the sight of her daughter's face popping up unexpectedly on TV and in print only made it worse.

'If she was sick, it would have been easier,' Dunbar said of her daughter's disappearance, 'because I would have known it was coming.' It is the suddenness of the loss that tears at her. 'I rode the train with her that day, not knowing that less than an hour later ...' said Dunbar, her voice trailing off.

Now the family is struggling to adjust to a new routine dictated by tragedy. Dunbar took a leave of absence from her job at the MTA so that she can come over in the mornings and help get the children ready for school. She and her son-in-law are both busy planning for the Nov. 10 memorial service to be held at 10 a.m. at Vanderveer Park United Methodist Church in East Flatbush.

Frank Taylor plans to give a speech celebrating his wife's life at a reception after the service at the Marriott in downtown Brooklyn at 3 p.m.

'I don't think she would want me to speak about her so much as to speak for her,' he said. 'She would want people to look at their ways and realize that it's not all about money, that sometimes it's about making other people happy first.'

Copyright © 2002, Newsday, Inc.

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Today, on September 11, 2001 at my high school in Florida, I recieved a tag with Lorisa's name on it. We wear these to remember those who lost their lives. I took a personal moment of silence for her and her family. I am terribly sorry for your loss and although I did not know her, I put friend under the relationship section because her name will always remain in my heart my thoughts and my prayers. God bless.
Taylor Hannon, Friend
Sep 11 2013 8:55AM
Lorisa Ceylon Taylor.You are a beautiful women.On September 11 2001 you were on the 94 floor Tower 1 at Marsh and MccLeann
Lafayette, Friend
Apr 7 2013 7:32PM
I did not know Lorisa, but I was the American Red Cross volunteer that spoke with Frank after 9/11. Frank and I had multiple phone calls. The way he spoke of his wife and girls was heart breaking & he truly cherished his family. On my last call with him he asked some personal information about me like where I was from. We had a brief talk on Packer Football and what it was like for him to live in the boroughs. It has been all these years and when I do think of my experience with the American Red Cross I hope I was able to do something positive in his life.
Susan (From Green Bay, WI)
Aug 24 2012 3:22PM
Lorisa was a business associate. Spoke with her about a week before 9-11. She was very bright, always kind, and extremely helpful. My sincere prayers go out to her family on the 10th Memorial of 9-11. We will never forget.
CS, Colleague
Sep 11 2011 1:33PM
To the family of Lorisa Taylor, I am a Marsh employee who never had the honor of meeting Lorisa through work. Instead, on Sept. 12th, 2001, I remember briefly meeting your family at Marsh when you were searching for answers. I remember your faces; not only the fear but the love you had for Lorisa and the warmth I felt from your family. I could tell that she was someone very special. I have remembered her name ever since and think of your family often. I hope with time, your pain has been filled with the joy of seeing her continue to live in you and in her children. God Bless, Karen
Karen, Colleague
Sep 9 2011 10:29PM
Lorisa things will never be the same since you departed our family on September 11th. You left behind so many that loved and cared for you. As time progress 'What If???' constantly rings in my mind like bells. If you wouldn't have traveled to work on that day would you still be here? I think about how much pain and anguish our family suffered when you passed. How many endless days searching to find your body but our family wasn't so lucky. I think God took you for a reason and whatever the case may be I know he is happy because you shed so much joy in our lives here on earth. I love you big cousin and you will be missed.
Qualesha Bland, Family
Sep 18 2010 9:56PM
For Lorisa Taylor she is in HEAVEN having a good time she was in the NORTH TOWER on the 94th floor during the tragic day (911) .Frank Taylor I will like to learn more about LORISA CESYLON TAYLOR. GOD BLESS youn and your family. Don't FORGET SEPTEMBER 11, 2001. LORISA CESYLON TAYLOR. Always thinking about that day,a friend Lafayette Maria Young I am his mother I am 46 years old 10 years old 9/14/2010
Lafayette Young, Friend
Sep 14 2010 9:44PM
I stumbled across this page and started reading. At first i thought well she has the same name as me.. Then i saw she named one of her children the same as i did. 'Imani' which is Swahili for 'Hope'. Deepest Sympathy to her Family. I don't understand how people can forget... After 9/11 everyone had flags everywhere, they were out of stock in every wal-mart. Now you rarely see them. I know I will never forget.
Lorisa Middlecamp, Friend
Apr 18 2004 5:40PM
I read about Lorisa through an e-mail from Mr. Doyle - I did not know her, but she caught my attention b/c she worked for MMC as did my Father, Michael Tinley - he too lost his life on 9/11. Just reading about Lorisa, I can tell that she was a beautiful person with a wonderful soul! I hope that she is dancing in heaven with my father! He, too, loved to dance! To Lorisa s family, my condolances as well as my understanding of this tragic loss of life on 9/11. Sincerely, Lisa Kennedy
Lisa Kennedy, Friend
Dec 5 2003 11:24PM
To the family of Lorisa Taylor. I'm Tom Lemery and I knew Lorisa when she went to Morrisville College (now called Morrisville State). I learned of Lorisa's death through the Morrisville Alumni Webpage. Lorisa had a very outgoing, friendly personality. And she loved to dance. As much as she like to have fun, she also knew she had to get her work done to get out of school. I can honestly say that I will never forget Lorisa. She was a person that if you met her, you would never forget her. You could always place her name with her face. That's how much of an impression she can have on you. And like many others she has been in contact with, I will miss her too. There will always be a place in my heart and will remember her. May God be with all of her family and friends, and may He bring his healing hand upon all of them. And may the memories of Lorisa help uplift, and ease the pain. My thoughts and prayers are with you always. Sincerely, Tom Lemery
Tom Lemery, Friend
Sep 14 2003 9:27PM
Lorisa was my insurance agent. She was always bright, friendly, informative and honest - a pleasure to deal with. I lost touch with her, and was stunned to learn, in March of 2003, that she'd died on 9/11. The world is a poorer, less cheerful place for her passing.
George R. Zachar, Friend
Mar 7 2003 3:35PM
To the Family of Lorisa Taylor, My name is Mary Adams. I live in San Diego,Ca and have never met Lorisa or even been to New York. But last Wednesday, I joined over 3,000 San Diegans in a ceremony of remembrance of that tragic day one year ago. A local radio station invited citizens to ring what they had named the Freedom Bell in honor of someone who had lost their life that day. We were each given a badge to wear with the name, age, and place they were.I was given a badge with the name of Lorisa Ceylon Taylor. After waiting in line for 3 hours it was finally my turn to step up to the microphone and ring this very large, beautiful, old bell. I tried hard to picture Lorisa as I waited. But all I knew for sure was that she was 20 years younger than myself and had been at the World Trade Center. The emotions I felt were almost overwhelming. I felt such a connection in my heart to her. My actual words were 'I am honored to remember Lorisa Ceylon Taylor, 31 years old, World Trade Center. You are in my heart forever' Then I rang this resounding bell. Since then, I have seen a picture of this beautiful, strong, vibrant, loving daughter, wife, mother of 3 precious children. Although your grief is tremendous, I hope that you can be comforted by the knowledge that someone all the way across the country has remembered, honored and has been touched by Lorisa, by her life and by her death. She truly occupies a place in my heart and you, her family will forever be in my prayers. Mary Adams .
mary adams, Friend
Sep 13 2002 7:31PM
Mrs. Dunbar, A year ago, I cut the photo of you with your daughter's picture pinned to your blouse from the Minneapolis paper and hung it on my refrigerator. The courage in your face still fills me with awe and admiration. I have two daughters and can only imagine the grief you have experienced this year. I know that this is not much to offer to someone who has lost a part of her soul, but I want you to know that I have grieved with you each and every day. Teresa
Teresa, Friend
Sep 11 2002 11:56AM
Many times I think of you, I look at your picture on my refrigerator, I think of Frank & the girls, your family & friends. I often wonder 'what if'. What if you would have stayed at the coffee shop a little longer, what if you would have stayed home that day. I know that everything happens for a reason & I also know that I will see you again one day. I told my friend Randy to look you up when he gets there. I hope the two of you meet, he's pretty cool. I LOVE YOU LORISA. (-: Christine
Christine Grant, Friend
Jun 3 2002 6:13PM