The More Work, the Better
Forget about taking it easy. James Marcel Cartier loved to work. Five long days was never enough to satisfy him. He insisted on six long days. "He loved to come home dirty," said his brother Michael. "It meant he had worked hard. He had no problem with that."
Mr. Cartier, 26, was a deep-dimpled, happy-go-lucky electrician who had been assigned to a job at the World Trade Center just two weeks before the attack. He lived in Astoria, Queens, with Michael, and was well known in his neighborhood because he had worked at so many different places. If he couldn't get enough overtime doing electrical jobs to fill up six days, then he got behind the counter at the A & F Deli.
Before becoming an electrician, starting when he was just 13, he had a succession of jobs at a mall in Jackson Heights. It would take too long to list all the stores, but he worked at a stationery store, a pizza place and a drugstore. He just worked.
So many people in Queens had encountered him on their shopping trips that they wrote in shoe polish on their windows, "We will miss you, James."
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on October 18, 2001.