David Harlow Rice

David Harlow Rice
World Trade Center

Turning Things Around

David Rice was the student with the grade point average of less than 2, who was voted most likely to succeed in high school. He was constantly in trouble. He would do things like rent a warehouse in Oklahoma City, hire a rock band, charge $10 a head and make thousand of dollars before the police broke up the party.

Still, as a teenager in Oklahoma City, he read biographies of Donald Trump and told his family that that was the kind of entrepreneur he would be. At age 31, David was an investor in bonds at Sandler O'Neill & Partners, in the south tower. "He drove his clients crazy but they loved him to death," says his younger brother, Andrew. "He was a pistol."

His life was marked by huge turnarounds. He had hit bottom in his early 20's from alcoholism and drug use. He dropped out of college. Then he began his recovery. He became a Fulbright scholar in Zimbabwe and South Africa. He earned a master's degree from the London School of Economics. Last February he transferred to New York from Chicago, where he had lived for 10 years.

"He was very real," his brother says. "He wasn't perfect but he was so wise for his age."

Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on 9/17/2001.

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