The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Like two pals

Without her faith, Gertrude Eggert, 90, might find it easy to be mad at God for the Sept. 11 death of her only daughter, Carol, who was her sole caregiver.

Carol's death left Gertrude all alone. The 60-year-old insurance executive worked on the 98th floor of the
World Trade Center and lived with her mom. "I pray at night and ask, 'Why me?' " Eggert says from her Staten Island, N.Y., home. But she shakes her head when asked if she's angry with God. Instead, she is thankful for the gift of a caring daughter. "I thank God for being good to my Carol," Eggert says. "I see her face everywhere."

Eggert, a member of Trinity Lutheran Church, Staten Island, keeps Carol's photo nearby, often laying it beside her pillow in bed. "We were like two pals," she says. "We did everything together — shopping, cooking, having fun. I'm lost without her. She did everything for me."

But Eggert is holding up incredibly well, says her pastor, Richard Michael. While Eggert is in excellent health, she gets help from Michael in managing finances and making living arrangements. Michael also helped to get an urn of ashes from the ground zero site, which Eggert buried alongside her husband. "She's with her daddy now," Eggert says.

Eggert and Michael are planning graveside prayers this Sept. 11.


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