January 10, 2003 - Although
almost a year and a half have passed since the Sept. 11 attacks, individuals
continue to cherish the memories of the loved ones who perished.
One act of memorial is the recent donation of $250,000 to the Medical
School in honor of Todd Ouida, an alum who was killed in the attacks.
Todd Ouida was on the 105th floor of the World
Trade Center, where he worked as a broker for Cantor-Fitzgerald. Although
Todd called his mother on his cell phone to tell her that he was unharmed,
he did not come out of the building. Todd's father, who worked on the
77th floor, managed to escape.
"Somebody told me that Todd was above
me. I still say that Todd's above me," said Herbert Ouida, Todd's
Herbert said he and Todd's mother Andrea offered
the money to the University because their son was particularly fond
of his days as a student at Michigan. Todd graduated from the University
in 1998 with a bachelor of arts in psychology. Herbert noted that a
speaker at his son's memorial service said everyone on campus referred
to Todd as "Buddy." The remark inspired the name for his memorial
"Todd came into his own at Michigan,"
said Herbert. "He loved the school. It was a significant part of
Todd's parents offered the money to the Medical
school specifically for the treatment of childhood anxiety disorders.
The school will use the funds to establish the Todd Ouida Clinical Scholars
Award and an annual lecture in childhood anxiety and depression.
"The Todd Ouida Clinical Scholars Award
will support new research on the genetic, biological and psychological
factors contributing to childhood anxiety disorders," said school
associate Prof. Gregory Hanna, director of the Division of Child and
Adolescent Psychiatry, in a statement. "The annual lecture will
allow us to focus national attention on these important problems and
to provide information to clinicians and researchers about the latest
advances in the field."
Herbert said he contributed the money to the
Medical school because his son suffered from panic attacks in his youth.
After medication failed to alleviate Todd's anxiety disorder, the young
Ouida entered psychotherapy and significantly improved his condition.
"Many people get stuck in this problem,"
Herbert said. "He didn't. He thrived. He traveled all over the
Todd's parents established the Todd Ouida Children's
Foundation Fund after his death to provide financial assistance to programs
that treat children who suffer from anxiety disorders. The memorial
website lists many beneficiaries of the fund and how others can make