William F. Fallon Jr., 53, exec for P.A.
Simply put, he was there when you needed him. Whether it was removing a tree that had fallen on a neighbor's garage, raising money for the town library or guiding people down 60 flights of stairs in thick black smoke as he did during the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, William F. Fallon Jr. was the kind of person everyone turned to.
That was surely the case last Tuesday. A general manager at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, Mr. Fallon, 53, worked on the 62nd floor of One World Trade Center. On Tuesday morning he called his wife, Brenda, at their home in Rocky Hill after the tower was hit by the first hijacked jetliner. He calmly told her he had to see what he could do to get people out.
Most of the Port Authority's employees on the 62nd floor escaped. Mr. Fallon did not.
"He always stood out as a go-to person," said Brian Nolan, mayor of Rocky Hill, who knew Mr. Fallon for 15 years. "If something had to be done, he was there. . . . Whenever there was a need, he was on the top of my list."
Mr. Fallon was born in Yonkers, N.Y., and grew up in Metuchen, where he attended St. Joseph's High School. In 1970 he graduated from Villanova University, where he was a member of the ROTC and became a lieutenant j.g. in the Navy.
As general manager of strategic analysis and industry relations in the Port Authority's Port Commerce Department, Mr. Fallon had a wide range of maritime-related responsibilities, from sales and customer service to managing the agency's international offices in London, Hong Kong and Seoul, South Korea.
In addition to being an active member of the Princeton United Methodist Church and a former representative on the Rocky Hill Borough Council, Fallon was an avid outdoorsman.
"He loved to hike," said Bob Gaffney, a friend and fellow Port Authority manager. "Every summer he took his family out West to one of the national parks. They just got back from a trip. . . . He was a great guy, very easy going."
Son of the late William F. Fallon Sr., Mr. Fallon is survived by his wife of 27 years, Brenda Carter Fallon; his son, Christopher; his mother, Margaret of Monroe Township; his sister, Patricia Quinlan of Warren; and his brothers, Donald J. of Hightstown, Peter B. of Warren and Stephen M. of South Bend, Ind.
Visiting hours are tomorrow from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, 40 Vandeventer Ave., Princeton. A funeral service will be held on Friday at 11 a.m. at Princeton United Methodist Church on Nassau Street, Princeton.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Christopher Fallon College Fund in memory of William Fallon, c/o Cynthia Ricker at PNC Bank, 76 Nassau St., Princeton, N.J. 08542, or to the Mary Jacobs Memorial Library Building Fund, 64 Washington St., Rocky Hill, N.J. 08553.
Profile by Amy Ellis Nutt published in THE STAR-LEDGER.