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Among the victims

Thursday, September 20, 2001

Some of those killed in terrorist acts Sept. 11:

David P. Kovalcin, 42, of Hudson, N.H., was a 1977 graduate of Norwin High School and a passenger on American Airlines Flight 11 that crashed into the World Trade Center.

Mr. Kovalcin, a senior engineer for Raytheon Corp., and an avid hiker and cross-country skier, had been taking one of many recent work-related trips to Los Angeles, said his brother, Ed Kovalcin, of North Huntingdon. He was one of four Raytheon employees who died in airplane crashes on Sept. 11.

Born in McKeesport, he lived with his family in West Mifflin and North Huntingdon. After high school, he attended Penn State University, where he earned a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering in 1983 and his master's in 1985. He had worked for Raytheon for 15 years.

In addition to his brother, he is survived by his wife, Elizabeth; two daughters, Rebecca, 4, and Marina, 1; and another brother, Duane, of Greensburg.

A memorial service was held yesterday in Hudson, and a second is planned at 10 a.m. on Sept. 24 at St. Agnes Church in North Huntingdon.

The family has established the David P. Kovalcin Memorial Fund. Checks made out the fund may be sent in care of Citizens Bank, 71 Lowell Road, Hudson, N.H. 03051. Proceeds will be distributed to charity.

Steven D. "Jake" Jacoby, 43, of Alexandria, Va., was chief operating officer of Metrocall Inc., one of the nation's largest paging companies. "The fact that Metrocall's technical operating network continued to function and provide critical communications during this horrific event was a tribute to Jake," said Vince Kelly, the firm's chief financial officer. Jacoby, who was in the American Airlines flight that slammed into the Pentagon, recently oversaw the development of a two-way paging device for critically ill people to use in emergencies. Jacoby is survived by his wife, Kim, and three children.

Gary Koecheler, 57, of Harrison, N.Y., worked as a government bonds trader for Euro Brokers Inc. on the 84th floor of the World Trade Center. He served two tours of duty in Vietnam with the Army, including service behind enemy lines in an intelligence unit. He received the Bronze Star for bravery in 1968. "We thought if anyone could get out, he had so much training that he would be the one," said one of his sisters, Mary Jo Heine of Eagan, Minn. "That really provided us with a lot of hope that he'd resurface, he'd come back." Survivors include his wife, Maureen, and two sons.

Laura Lee Morabito, 34, of Framingham, Mass., would sometimes sing in an all-woman quintet as a sales gimmick for her employer, Qantas Airways. Morabito, national sales manager for the airline, and the four other women would perform wearing poodle skirts and beehive hairdos. "They were always really goofy," Qantas spokesman Steve Kernaghan said. "They were like a bunch of high school girls." Morabito was aboard American Flight 11, headed to a business trip postponed twice before.

Jason Oswald, 28, of New York, a bond trader for Cantor Fitzgerald, moved to New York from Chicago in June to be near his girlfriend, Nancy Prentis. Oswald and Prentis, 30, had coffee together the morning of Sept. 11. before he went to work at the World Trade Center. "We had planned on going for a run and having dinner together that evening," Prentis said. "His last words to me were that he would be praying for me that day because I had a tough day ahead at work."

Compiled by Sally Kalson

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