By Julie Fialkow
When I think about Casey, I can't help but smile. I think of her at 2:30 in the morning in the ol' basement, sleep a distant memory, still smiling, still running in circles around the rest of the staff (if I recall, literally).
She was better than a huge cup of coffee. She was so sunny, so effravescent. Casey was one of those people who strangers are drawn to and her friends always feel it when she's not there. I remember a few moments in college whether it be in the office or at a bar that were a little quiet, a little blah, and uniformly we would go, "Hey, where's Casey? Someone get her here!"
I remember walking down to the basement and just hearing her say "Jules!" would make my day. Casey made everyone feel like a rockstar.
Actually, she was the closest thing the Collegian ever had to a rockstar - and held that role modestly and effortlessly. I have never met a woman like Casey before and I know I never will. She could put the boys to shame with her Pop-a-shot moves, and slay them looking fierce in a shiny green ball gown.
She was warm, lovely, hysterically funny, and wicked smart as they say in Massachusetts. Last time I saw Casey we were playing Trivial Pursuit. Do I need to tell you there was no contest? I
think I saw my roomates heads spin. Really. She knew about Russian politics and pop culture. A double, triple, heck, a quadruple threat in every way.
I just got a postcard from Casey a few months ago. She drops in the middle that she's back in chemo but quickly follows it up by seeing the bright side which is that at least she can watch the Red Sox. Always staying positive despite the crappiest circumstances. I feel blessed for having known Casey.
She embodied so many amazing qualities that all of us strive to be. Her strength and beauty will continually inspire me throughout my life.
Julie worked with Casey at the UMass Daily Collegian.