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Richard Cudina Memorial
Rockland County American Patriot Garden
Empty Sky: NJ State 9/11 Memorial
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Montclair State University 9/11 Memorial
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Richard Cudina Foundation
played a mean harmonica
Richard Cudina, 46, was a broker at Cantor Fitzgerald, but his heart was far from the buttoned-down world of Wall Street.
As a young man, he was a daredevil on the ski slopes of northern New Jersey, barreling off the trail to glide between trees and seeking out boulders from which to launch himself skyward. When he graduated from college, he became a cruise ship director and bummed around ski resorts in Colorado and Switzerland. His idea of fun as a grownup was to pilot helicopters around Manhattan.
A month before he died, Cudina, a Jimmy Buffett disciple, told his friends and family how he wanted to be remembered.
"He wanted us to smoke cigars, drink margaritas and pina coladas, and he'd pick up the tab," said his brother, Chris. "He wanted his remains scattered over the ocean someplace beautiful."
The family planned to gather in New Jersey this weekend to remember Cudina. It may not be the tropics, but his brother is planning his own small tribute. He'll be wearing a Hawaiian shirt.