Her mother named her Elizabeth after the queen of England. More than four decades later, she took another name: Safia Al-Kasaby, reflecting her new identity as a Muslima.
Safia, 43, is an unlikely candidate for conversion. She claims Jewish and Puerto Rican ancestry. She is a former sergeant first class in the Air Force National Guard. And she lost eight relatives – one uncle and seven cousins – in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.
Back then, Safia did not imagine the faith professed by the hijackers would one day become her own.