'My Dear Little Friend'
She was a small-town girl with her sights set on the world. She grew up in Stanley, N.D., population 1,000, but eventually traveled to China, studied in England and hiked on her own around Peru. Ann N. Nelson loved grand plans and had little patience for details — a quality that sometimes left hungry dinner guests in the living room while she was still reading recipes off the back of boxes in the kitchen.
"Life's purpose is not to find a fun party, it is to make one," was the quote Ms. Nelson had selected for the yearbook her senior year at Carleton College.
Exuberant. Spontaneous. Ambitious. Determined. Introspective. Passionate. Irreverent. Brilliant. That is how friends and family remember Ms. Nelson, a 30-year-old bond trader at Cantor Fitzgerald. She had worked at the firm less than nine months, after having worked five years at an investment firm in Chicago.
"She was my dear little friend," said her mother, Jenette Nelson.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 10, 2001.