The Middletown Press (Middletown, CT)
‘Time stopped for me’
Greenwich woman still mourns for her brother
Time stopped for me:” That’s how Wells Noonan of Greenwich remembers Sept. 11, 2001. “I received a call informing me that Robby was in the tower that was hit, but I wasn’t sure,” Noonan told Hearst Media Connecticut, thinking back to that day and about her brother, Robert.
“After that, it was all about reaching Robby, my other siblings and my parents, who were out of town. It was all about (trying to find) Robby,” she said. “I had a college friend named Jake Kirby who spent day and night searching hospitals for him.”
Wells and her brother Robert grew up in Greenwich. In 2001, Robert Noonan lived in Rowayton with wife, Dana, and a young son, Chance, who is now 23, and he worked as a broker at Cantor Fitzgerald on the 105th floor of 1 World Trade Center.
Wells Noonan lived in Kentucky at the time of the terror attack and was at home with her young daughter, 14month-old Emma, when she heard the news.
“Time stopped for me,” Noonan said. “I really don’t remember much. My neighbor came over and we watched the TV. Eventually my husband and I packed up and went to my aunt’s for the night in Cincinnati. The next day we drove to Greenwich along with many firefighters. We had hope we would maybe find him safe.”
But Robert Noonan was one of the 161 victims killed in the terror attack with ties to Connecticut.
Wells Noonan said she has videos saved of her brother on her cellphone, just as she does of other loved ones who have died. And his memory is always with her.
“I miss giggling at church, his amazing advice and his guidance,” she said. “I miss the energy he brought into a room. He was always entertaining and a very good listener. I miss his voice, his laugh, how scaled his hands were from all the sports he did. I'll never forget our dance at his wedding.”
In Greenwich, Robert Noonan is remembered as one of the 33 victims with ties to the town.
In the years since, the families in
“I miss the energy he brought into a room. He was always entertaining and a very good listener. I miss his voice, his laugh, how scaled his hands were from all the sports he did.
— Wells Noonan
town who lost loved ones have gathered for remembrance ceremonies on the anniversary of the attacks. The early ceremonies were first held at Town Hall and at the Glenville Volunteer Fire Company, which has a memorial made of a piece of steel from the World Trade Center and still hosts a ceremony.
The goal for the families was to build a memorial in Greenwich where they could privately reflect on their losses and where the public could also remember the events of that day and honor those who died.
The families worked together over several years to privately raise the money to design and build the memorial, giving it to the town as a gift.
Today, the memorial stands at Cos
Cob Park, overlooking Long Island Sound with the skyline of Manhattan in the far distance. The stars and stripes of the American flag are carved into the two glass towers that make up the memorial. Inside the stripes of the American flag, the names of Greenwich’s victims, including Robert Noonan, are carved for prosperity.
Wells Noonan, who moved back to her hometown and is a well-known local artist, helped get the work on the memorial completed and has served as the leader of the ceremony that takes place at the park every Sept. 11.
“I am happy we have something to go to anytime we want,” Noonan said. “It has an amazing view.”