In the eyes of his colleagues at Mizuho Capital Markets Corporation, Keiji Takahashi demonstrated the qualities of a true hero on September 11, 2001. From his office on the 80th floor of the South Tower, Mr. Takahashi viewed the fire blazing in the North Tower of the World Trade Center before most of his associates at Mizuho knew what had occurred. The 42-year-old manager wasted no time in alerting his staff about the danger that had erupted in the next building. Together with three other members of Mizuho’s management team, Keiji urged the company’s employees to exit the South Tower immediately.
Mr. Takahashi played an instrumental role in evacuating the 80th floor of 2 World Trade Center, thereby helping to save numerous lives. As a result of his decisiveness and quick-thinking, most Mizuho employees were well below the point of impact when United Flight 175 hit the South Tower. Along with the three other managers who orchestrated the 80th floor exodus, Keiji Takahashi did not escape the building alive.
Friends and colleagues remember Keiji’s kindness and perpetual smile. He was well-liked by all, and revered for his “presence of mind, heroic instincts, and selfless actions” on that tragic day, according to one colleague. A Japanese citizen, Mr. Takahashi graduated from the Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo. He earned a Law Doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania in 1985.
Keiji lived with his wife and two children in Tenafly, NJ. He touched the lives of many, and is greatly missed by those who knew him.