I wish to write in remembrance of someone I have never met, never will meet, and in the normal course of events would never have even heard of his name!
Joseph Reina Jr., a manager of operations at Cantor Fitzgerald, met the love of his life in 1996 while on vacation in Cancun, Mexico.
Actually, he first talked to the former Lisa Donoso on the telephone — about bonds — when she worked at Gruntal & Co., Manhattan.
“We realized we were going to Cancun at the same time and thought it was a strange coincidence,” she recalled. “We met at a club, but didn’t meet until the last night — so we didn’t have much time to hang out. Then we were on the same flight home.”
Before they knew it, a relationship was blooming. The couple became engaged in 1998 and married a year later.
On Sept. 11, Mr. Reina gave his half-awake wife, then nine months’ pregnant, a smooch and then kissed her stomach.
It was the same morning routine for almost two years of marriage. But those kisses were the last they shared. Mr. Reina is among those missing from the World Trade Center disaster.
Mrs. Reina, who was home from work for her first week of maternity leave, was asleep that Tuesday when the phone rang at 9:01 a.m.
“All I heard was static — like a cell phone couldn’t connect,” said the 31-year old Annadale resident. “So I don’t really know if he tried to call.”
Mr. Reina, 32, a Brooklyn native, spent 14 years with Cantor Fitzgerald and worked his way up to a manager of operations on the 101st floor of 1 World Trade Center.
“Our lives just started. He just worked so we could have things. The most important thing for him was taking care of us,” said Mrs. Reina, who now works for Bear Stearns & Co.
“He had a great sense of humor. He could turn any bad situation upside down and into a good one,” said Mrs. Reina.
Mr. Reina moved to New Springville in 1984 and then to Annadale when he married in 1999.
A graduate of Port Richmond High School, where he played baseball, Mr. Reina played first base and pitched for the Cantor Fitzgerald softball team. He was an avid Jets and Yankees fan.
“He loved to travel. We’d go on at least three or four trips a year. I’m glad that he went and got to see so many places in his short life,” said Mrs. Reina. The couple’s son, Joseph Robert Reina, was born on Oct. 4. “He looks exactly like his daddy,” said Mrs. Reina.
“It kills me that he never had one second with his son,” said Mrs. Reina. In addition to his wife, Lisa, and his son, Joseph, Mr. Reina is survived by his parents, Rosemarie and Joseph Reina; his brother, Michael; his sister, Joann, and several nieces and nephews.
His life ended as a bunch of fanatics ploughed their jet-fuel laden aircraft into the main core of 1 World Trade Centre.
He died, along with 2,995 other innocents, in the cause of a Muslim fanatic’s mad ramblings; in the name of their god. He died because he was there, because he went to work, because the killers thought it would create the headlines and publicity which they craved.
They got their headlines; they received their publicity, but hopefully, the sacrifice of Joseph Reina Jr. , along with the 2995 others who died on that sad day in September, will be remembered long after the very memories of the hate-filled fools who planned these murders drift away with the winds.
Post created as part of Project 2996.