RAFU STAFF REPORT
NEW YORK — The long-running CBS news magazine “60 Minutes” remembered the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks during its Sunday night edition by bringing into focus the story of 32-year-old financial manager Melissa “Missy” Candida Doi.
When United Airlines Flight 175 hit the South Tower of the World Trade Center, Doi and another five people were trapped in the impact zone on the 83rd floor where her employer, IQ Financial Systems, was located.
“I’m on the 83rd floor!” Doi explained to the 911 operator, panic in her voice. “Are they going to be able to get somebody up here? Well, there’s no one here yet, and the floor’s completely engulfed. We’re on the floor and we can’t breathe. And it’s very, very, very hot.”
Doi: “I’m going to die, aren’t I?”
Operator Barnes: “No, no, no, no, no…”
Doi: “I’m gonna die.”
Operator Barnes: “Ma’am, Ma’am, Ma’am, say your prayers. You gotta think positive because you gotta help each other get off the floor.”
Barnes assures Doi that she has already notified an NYFD lieutenant who knows Doi is there with five other people.
As the South Tower burned, Doi asked Barnes, “Can you stay on the line with me, please? I feel like I’m dying.”
After 24½ minutes, the call cuts off. However, before the call ended, Doi gave Barnes her mother’s name and phone number in hopes that the operator could relay a last message. That evening, Doi’s mother, Evelyn Alderete, received a call from the 911 operator with the following message:
“Tell my mother that I love her and that she’s the best mom in the whole world.”
It took three years for Doi’s remains to be found in the rubble. At the National 9/11 Memorial, she is memorialized at the South Pool, on Panel S-46.
Born in Bronx, N.Y., Doi was a graduate of Northwestern University and Spence School. She studied ballet but chose the world of finance as a career.
The recording (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PDBjsKDagqk) was used during the prosecution of Zacarias Moussaoui, the only criminal trial to result from the attacks.