Bells Ring for Alumnus
Alex Steinman grew up in Staten Island and went to boarding school when he was 14. A few months earlier, his mother had died in a car accident, and when he arrived he was "totally lost and just looking for something solid," said his wife, Tracy Orr-Steinman.
For his first two years at Suffield Academy, in the hills of northern Connecticut, he struggled just to get his work done. But in his junior year, he was elected class president, and from then on was a leader and a force at the school, where he also played soccer and football. At a memorial for him there on Sunday, Mr. Steinman, a 32-year- old from Hoboken, N.J., who worked on the equity sales desk at Cantor Fitzgerald, was remembered by a former headmaster for "his charisma, his sense of humor and his ability to bring people together and inspire a sense of teamwork and family," said Ms. Tracy Orr-Steinman, who met him when both were students at the school.
In the center of the campus is Bell Hill, topped with a bronze bell that is rung only on special occasions, like when the soccer team wins a game. Once a year, it is also rung in honor of alumni who have died. After the memorial for Alex Steinman, the headmaster explained the significance of the bell and then invited Mr. Steinman's family and friends to ring it. One by one, people stepped forward and the bell clanged again and again, echoing over the playing fields that unfold below the hill.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on October 18, 2001.