A Family's 'Source of Light'
Elena Ledesma was the heart and soul of her extended family. On camping trips, she was the first to pitch the tents. She was the one who administered insulin to her 66-year- old diabetic mother and took her to the doctor. She was raising two daughters and working full time.
Ms. Ledesma, who was 37, worked at the World Trade Center as a maintenance coordinator at Marsh & McLennan. She was responsible for maintenance on Floors 93 to 99. The divorced mother of a 12-year-old and a 17-year-old, she lived in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Her mother, aunts and cousins all lived in the same building.
"My sister was a giving person," said Nelson Hernandez, her older brother. "She was always the one we turned to for anything. I had a lot of dreams. We were going to buy a house together for our mother."
Belkis Mercedes, a friend, said she believed that many family members still expected Ms. Ledesma to reappear. "She was their source of light," Ms. Mercedes said.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on October 6, 2001.