on October 16, 2014 at 7:00 AM, updated October 16, 2014 at 9:00 AM
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- Joann Tabeek always encouraged her daughter, Krystal, to follow her dreams.
She was especially supportive of her daughter's interest in dance, which eventually led to the young dancer's participation in competitive dance for 15 years.
But Joann never got to see her teen-age daughter shine on stage. Working as a vice president and partner at Cantor Fitzgerald on the 103rd floor of the World Trade Center, she was one of the nearly 3,000 people who perished in the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
"My mother never made it out (of the World Trade Center) on that horrific day. She always pushed me to follow my dreams, so this is the year I made it happen," said Ms. Tabeek.
Her dream -- to combine her love for dance with owning her own business -- recently became reality when she opened Studio 11 Dance Company in Grant City. The school is named Studio 11 in honor of her mother.
"I was only 12 when my mother died ... She was at every event I had ever been in since I began (to dance). Both my parents were very supportive of everything I took part in," she said, noting that her father, Al, helped her launch the dance company.
"I'm following in my father's footsteps; he owns and operates the James and Joann Tabeek Memorial Softball League in both my mother's and brother's honor. My brother, James, died at the age of 3 from meningitis two years before I was born," she added.
Ms. Tabeek, now 24, hopes she can pass the inspiration she received from her parents on to many budding young dancers.
"The plan is to create a safe, professional and comfortable atmosphere for all students. Studio 11 is fully committed to helping young students achieve their dreams of becoming professional dancers while providing extensive training in all styles of dance," she said.
Through word-of-mouth, Ms. Tabeek hopes to grow the business. She also hopes to follow her father's lead and get involved with various charities.
"My father has given to numerous charities across the Island throughout the past 28 years. My plan is to do just the same ... and make a positive impact on all those who are in need of our love and support," she said.
Ms. Tabeek plans to expand her roster of classes within the next five years.
"We want to give children the education they deserve to be able to dance professionally in high schools, shows, tours etc... We also want to be able to expand in location size with various studios for both children and adults," she said.