Ten years ago Sunday, Gordon “Gordy” Aamoth Jr. made a phone call to his mother from the 104th floor of the World Trade Center’s south tower.
An investment banker at Sandler O’Neill, the 32-year-old had flown from Minnesota to the firm’s New York headquarters after closing his first major merger deal.
After the north tower was hit by a hijacked plane, he called his mother and told her “she shouldn’t worry because it was the other tower that had been hit and she would see it on TV.”
This story was told Sunday afternoon to about 150 attendees of James J. Hill Days by Aamoth’s father, Gordon Sr., in his first public remarks since his son died in the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
“When we got up this morning,” he said, the sky “was just as clear as it was in New York, and you couldn’t help but look up to the east and have the memories of that terrible day run through your mind.”
Aamoth’s remarks were part of a that included a performance by the U.S. Army Marching Band, a statement by former Congressman Jim Ramstad and a speech by Wayzata Mayor Ken Wilcox.
“Although we can’t forecast what’s going to come down the pike at us,” Wilcox said, “based on how this country has reacted in the last 10 years, I think we can have great faith that we as a country, we as a people will survive and persevere.”
Marty Schneider, the ceremony's organizer, said he had Morgan Stanley colleagues who died in the attacks.
“This weekend, because it was the 10th anniversary of 9/11, we really wanted to make the James J. Hill Days something that wasn’t just a happy end-of-summer celebration.”
Editor's note: The entirety of Dr. Gordon Aamoth's speech will appear on the site later today.