His Last Mountain
When he was hugging the side of a mountain was when he felt most capable and in control. Transport Edwin J. Graf III to the Grand Tetons or Yosemite, and he was instantly at peace. "It was the most therapeutic thing he could imagine," said Bill Eydt, a long- time friend and his frequent climbing partner.
In his work life, noise and commotion would build up, and his answer was to climb. Last February, on the coldest weekend of the winter, he felt the need and traveled to the Green Mountains in Vermont and camped out for two nights. He came back renewed.
Mr. Graf, 48, had been a skilled mountain climber since college, and perhaps it was apt that he also worked high up, as a vice president at Cantor Fitzgerald on the 104th floor of the World Trade Center.
Naturally, friends worried about him hanging from pitons, but not sitting at the office. "We always feared something would happen on a mountain," said Polly Perkins, a friend since high school. "He did fall off a mountain. It just happened to be a mountain in New York City. That's not what we expected."
Mr. Graf was divorced and lived in Rowayton, Conn. He had three children, Kristin, 15, Tyler, 14, and Wesley, 12. Not long ago, he took the two boys to a Go Vertical gym so they, too, could scale a mountain. Now when Tyler sees the face of a mountain, he calls out to his dad, because he knows that's where his dad's spirit is.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 29, 2001.
EDWIN J. GRAF III, 48, was a victim of the tragedy at the World Trade Center, September 11, 2001 where he was a Vice President at Cantor Fitzgerald Securities, loving father of Kristen, Tyler, Wesley and Sarah. Son of Margaret K. Graf and the late Edwin J. Graf of Ellicott City, brother of Margaret Labesky, Susan Fennell, Mary Beth Graf Brohawn and Kathleen OBrian of the Baltimore area and Michael Graf of New York. He is also survived by 17 nieces and nephews and numerous close friends. The Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, September 22, 2001 at 10 A.M. at the Church of Resurrection in Ellicott City. In lieu of flowers. The family request that donations be made to an Education Trust which is being established for the benefit of Mr. Grafs children. Donations may be to Susan Graf Fennell, Trustee of the Graf Family Trust, 2429 Hannon court, Ellicott City MD 21042.
Paid Notice published in THE BALTIMORE SUN on September 20, 2001.