The next-to-last phone call Janet Alonso, 41, made on the morning of September 11th was typical: its genesis was maternal anxiety, and its focal point was her one-year-old son, Robbie, born with Down syndrome. She was checking in with her mother-in-law, Margaret, who handled the babysitting during the three days each week that Janet spent working as an analyst for Marsh & McLennan on the 97th floor of the World Trade Center’s North Tower, and was also making sure Robbie's misplaced foot braces, which he found impossible to take his baby steps without, had been found. "Check his stroller," Janet suggested. Bingo. Grandma discovered the braces.
In addition to Robbie, Janet was the mother of two-year-old Victoria, a miracle baby of sorts. After 10 years of trying to conceive, Janet had all but surrendered her dream of becoming a mother when she discovered she was pregnant. Janet was so ecstatic when she found out that she wrote her husband, Robert, a letter, thanking him for the greatest gift of her life.
A deeply spiritual woman with a beautiful smile and bright blue eyes, Janet radiated an inner beauty that enhanced her classic features and gentle ways. Gifted with a stunning voice, she thrilled the congregation at church every Sunday with her singing. She was raised to view life in a positive way, always reaching out to help children, stray animals, homeless people, anyone who needed help.
"Janet worked so hard for what we had," said her husband. "She went back to school in her mid-thirties to get her degree and better herself on the job. When she graduated from college, she was pregnant with our first child. I don't think I could have done all of that. But she did it. When Janet wanted to accomplish something, she planned it out and gave it all she had."
Though her children were her passion, Janet was a diligent homemaker. She loved painting and refinishing furniture, and spent the weekend before her death sanding the porch they had added to their house in Stony Point, New York. Her final phone call was to her husband; she said that her office was filled with so much smoke that she couldn’t breathe. And she told him that she loved him with all of her heart.