Love Behind the Wheel
It was Saturday morning, and Cathy Faughnan was standing in the chilling wind beside a soccer field rooting for Juliet, her second child. Just a few weeks earlier, that had been the job of her husband, Christopher Faughnan.
They met as undergraduates at the University of Colorado, where he worked as a security guard and she as a lifeguard. One day, she held up a piece of paper to him that said, "Cute Butt."
He became a perfect dad. When Mr. Faughnan got home every weekday at 6:30 p.m. from his job as a trader at Cantor Fitzgerald, "he would get the kids all crazy," Mrs. Faughnan said.
"They would jump around him, laughing and kissing him."
He bought a minivan, and ferried the three children to art classes, gymnastic practice, ballet lessons and soccer games.
The children are Siena, 7, Juliet, 5, and Liam, 3. One night, Liam asked his mother why Daddy could not come back, but a few days later, he told her that his father was a hero. "I don't know where he got that," Mrs. Faughnan said. "And he told me: 'Mommy, I will take care of you. Daddy doesn't want you to be sad.' "
Today would have been Mr. Faughnan's 38th birthday. After the trick-or-treating tonight, Mrs. Faughnan will ask the children to write their dad a message on a piece of paper, tie it to a balloon and let it fly.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on October 31, 2001.