Casey & Amber 4-04\' NYC - 16th BD.jpg

In April, 2004 for Casey’s 16th birthday, I (mom) took Casey and Amber to NYC for a weekend. This was Casey’s first trip ever to the Big Apple. We took a double decker tour bus throughout Manhattan, getting off and on to sample different neighborhoods, enjoyed shopping, Times Square and two Broadway shows, including Rent. Casey and Amber loved Rent so much that we had to go to a music store on Times Square after the show so that Casey could buy the soundtrack. Thereafter, Casey would play the soundtrack while she was in the bathroom at home as well as in her bedroom and soon learned all of the songs by heart. She would sing them all of the time and had several favorites, including “Light My Candle”, sung by the character, Mimi. While Casey saw dozens of shows thereafter, Rent remained one of her all time favorites.

Joel and I saw Rent last night at the local theater in Media and of course, I thought of Casey the entire time (I thought of Amber as well). It brought tears to my eyes when Mimi began singing “Light My Candle”. However, I find comfort in the hope that Casey was there with us in spirit, enjoyed seeing the show again and was singing along with Mimi and the entire cast throughout the show.

The first photo of Casey and Amber was taken in the hotel lobby before we left for the show and the second, in The Plaza Hotel, where we had brunch Sunday morning. Click here to view more photos from this trip and to read an excerpt from Casey’s autobiography annotations about her NYC experience.

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