Wall Street brokers often complain about how much work they have to do in such little time that they can't even contemplate taking a vacation. But not Elkin Yuen, who worked for Carr Futures.
Every year, he and his wife, Cella, took two major vacations and plenty of smaller ones, to get away from the city they grew up in. It was important, he always told his wife, to have fun, to live in the moment. (And to play golf, go to the beach and gamble, if at all possible.) Even when his wife had the urge to save money more quickly to buy a house, "he'd rather spend a few thousand dollars going away for a week than save the money," his wife recalled. And with that perpetual smile and infectious joie de vivre, who could say no?
Hawaii, Cancún, Las Vegas, Myrtle Beach, Lake Tahoe, St. Maartens, Walt Disney World: they all made their way into the overflowing photo albums in the Yuens' Flushing home. Oh, and Aruba, twice. "I'm so glad he pushed me," Mrs. Yuen said. "I would have lost all that time with him."
Perhaps the only thing Mr. Yuen loved more than going on vacation was doting on his daughter, Nicole, now 3. These days, Nicole is still not sure what happened, but she does miss her father. She sometimes tells her mother: "I want Daddy to come home. Daddy used to take me to Chucky Cheese."
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 23, 2001.