Life is Too Short: Stories of Transformation and Renewal after 9/11

Chris Conefry

Chris Conefry

 After 9/11, Chris Conefry was tired of the New York City rat race and moved his family to a more laid-back lifestyle in South Carolina.

Making the 2008 move wasn’t easy for the native New Yorker, who had often considered relocating but hesitated to leave family, friends and a good job on Wall Street. “September 11 cemented the deal,” he says.

After 9/11, Chris, an equities trader, had decided that life was too short to not pursue happiness. After losing 17 friends and fleeing Ground Zero in a panic — covered in dust, soot and debris — he was ready to move south. Happiness and safety were more important than climbing the ladder, he learned.

He sold his upscale condo with the skyline view in trendy Hoboken, New Jersey, left his good job downtown, and started anew in a small southern town where the pace of life was, well, not New York’s.

Still trading equities, he now works near the ocean in Beaufort, South Carolina. Chris’s wife, Erika, and son, Cole, have also switched gears to a slower pace of life.

“If there was any correlation between September 11 and moving south, it was learning to make decisions that would make you happy,” he says. “It wasn’t a case of me being afraid of being in New York City because of another 9/11, it was more of a life’s-too-short decision.”

Chris is just one of many folks who decided that life was too short after 9/11, and transformed his life.  Read about him and a dozen others in my new book, Life is Too Short: Stories of Transformation and Renewal After 9/11 available this summer.

Leave a Reply