Date of e-mail: Feb,2002
Subject line of e-mail: biography submitted to the justice department
Body of e-mail:
My name is Richard Pecorella and my fiancée/domestic partner Karen Juday was murdered in the WTC terrorist attack. She worked for Cantor Fitzgerald on the 101st floor. Karen and I met at an Indy car race in Nazareth Pa. on April 26th, 1997. It was a one in a million shot that we met. She was visiting her brother who is a racecar team member and I was going to my first race. I was in the middle of finalizing my divorce of a marriage of 24 years. Karen was visiting from Elkhart, Indiana. We were sitting next to each other in the stands. We started talking and she told me about her life in Indiana and I told her about my divorce. I asked her to go to dinner after the race and she accepted. It was the most magical day I could remember ever having-- I fell in love with a stranger almost immediately. She went back home to Indiana the next morning and I went back to Brooklyn, NY.
Five days later she called me and told me she was packing her bags and moving to her brother’s house in Reading, Pennsylvania, so that we could be closer to one another and see each other on weekends. In six months my divorce went through and I asked Karen if she would move in with me. She moved to Brooklyn, NY on Sept 9th 1997 that was the day my life changed like I never thought it would. We became best friends, lovers, and we were happier than anyone could ever imagine. It was a fairytale relationship. We cared for each other and we enjoyed every moment we were together. I cannot describe in words the love and devotion we had for one another. We depended on each other for everything. We never had an argument. We never went to bed alone. We made decisions together, except one- I wanted to marry her right away. Karen felt my daughters were not ready for me to marry and she wanted to give them more time. I told her I would handle them, and she said, “No-- they will turn on you.” We waited and the kids grew to love Karen. We planned to marry on June 17th 2002 in Las Vegas, in a simple and quiet Chapel wedding. We never got the chance to say the words that we knew we already vowed to- “Till death due us part…” The events on 9-11-01 took care of that in an instant.
My life was shattered along with thousands of others. My heart and soul was taken away. I finally found “the one” and she was gone in flash. My life has been changed again forever this time. I will never find that heart and soul again- it was truly a once in a lifetime bond that we had. No money will ever change that nor do I expect it too. In the middle of all this the day I had the memorial service for Karen, my ex wife died suddenly and unexpectedly. This created a new and incredible challenge for me to survive as a person, and now my daughters’ lives are in even more chaos- they not only lost the woman they had grown to love and who made their father happy, but they also lost their Mom who loved them dearly. I now have to find the inner strength to get my family through all of this. Karen and I lived together for the last 4 and ½ years We were not only soul mates we were best friends and lovers.