AVON, Conn. (WTNH) – For an Avon family, September 11, 2001 feels like just yesterday. They relive it constantly.
“When I think of something, was it before or after and that’s how I tell time, was it before or after,” said Dorine Toyen.
Before of after life with Amy. The 24-year-old Bentley College graduate, who lived in Boston, just happened to be at Windows in the World Trade Center attending a trade show.
“She was up that morning, crack of dawn, got the plane, got to the Trade Center, went up to the top and that’s where she was,” Toyen said.
The artistic young woman who played piano and sketched meticulously was planning her wedding.
“We had gone shopping and she picked the dress she wanted, and it was going be ordered. She was so happy,” Toyen said.
“We say she passed away or died, but the real truth is she was murdered,” said Marty Toyen. “It’s always in the news, like Afghanistan now, the Taliban, Al Qaeda, it’s always in the news 20 years later.”
On the anniversary, the family will take a peaceful drive and stay away from news coverage, but the family deeply appreciates the community’s efforts, especially a memorial at the Avon Library.
“You’ll see a bronze statue of a little girl reading a book on a bench with her teddy bear and that was Amy,” Marty said. “She loved that sundress. Every time we’d wash it, she’d pull it out and want to wear it again.”
Those are the happy memories the Toyens cling to. The pictures of two sisters who shared so much. They’re grateful for each other.
“The broader picture is just for people to cherish what they have in the moment because you never know it could be gone instantly,” said Heather Toyen, Amy’s sister.
Perspective gained, potential lost. Amy’s artwork, a reminder of where she was and where she’s gone.