From NY Times Dec 26, 2002
'Gavin Cushny: All Things American'
Gavin Cushny, the son of an Episcopal priest from England, considered America paradise. Randy Yates, from California, was interested in everything British. Naturally, when the two young men met, as students at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland 25 years ago, they became close friends.
Mr. Cushny complained bitterly about Britain B the dreary weather, the lack of central heating, the ancient plumbing. "He wanted to know a lot about California B what the homes were like, how they were built, why the plumbing didn't vibrate at night," Mr. Yates said.
The two friends talked of moving to California together, but Mr. Cushny instead settled in New York City, where he eventually went to work on the 104th floor of the World Trade Center, as a programmer for eSpeed. "He loved what he considered the emotional honesty of Americans," Mr. Yates said.
His friend had an American's devotion to self-improvement. He studied math at Columbia, with the idea of perhaps getting an engineering degree. He took acting classes as a way of overcoming his stage fright. He had regular sessions with a therapist. One of the things he was working out, Mr. Yates said, was his relationship with his strict and intellectually demanding father, who died last year.
"Gavin was committed to emotional and intellectual growth," said his fiancC)e, Susann Brady, who was to have married Mr. Cushny, 47, on Oct. 26, and instead buried him. "He encouraged that in other people, too. If we had differences, he was always open to talking about them."