July 17, 2011 Day of Service and Remembrance
For the second year in a row, friends and family sought to honor Casey Feldman’s life and memory on the anniversary of her death by volunteering together at Francisvale Home for Smaller Animals, a no-kill animal shelter in Radnor, Pa. Established in 1897 and incorporated in 1902, Francisvale is thought to be the oldest no-kill animal shelter in the nation. Casey was 21 years old when she was struck and killed two years ago in Ocean City, New Jersey while walking to a summer job on the boardwalk.
Some 35 individuals spent their time insulating an attic, preparing the grounds for an upcoming doggie play area as well as for a memorial garden, painting a settee and chairs, cleaning the interior of the shelter and breaking down an old sofa and placing it in a dumpster.
A lunch time tribute at Francisvale was made to Casey with Casey’s mother, Dianne Anderson, reminiscing about Casey’s love for animals and support of animal rescue and no kill shelters. Casey was an animal lover, having everything from chickens, rabbits, guinea pigs, horses, lizards, fish, turtles, and of course, cats and dogs while growing up. She was a big advocate of adoption and all of the household pets were strays and adoptees in need of a home. Even the chickens were left over from the local 4-H. The family German Shepards all came from German Shepard Rescue of Southeastern Pa, which included a beautiful tribute to Casey in their Summer 2009 Newsletter.
Casey missed the family cats and dog while away at college and made time to volunteer at a no-kill shelter, Animal Haven, in NYC where she would love up the kitties and walk the dogs. The first puppy received by Animal Haven after Casey’s death was named “Casey” in her honor.
Jodi Button, Francisvale’s Executive Director, expressed the shelter’s tremendous gratitude to all of the volunteers for their hard work and completion of much needed jobs at the shelter, “The work accomplished in Casey’s name has made all the difference in the world… It seems like such a wonderful testament to Casey’s life that she would have so many fabulous people willing to roll up their sleeves on a hot summer’s day to offer the precious gift of time and goodwill. We were all taken by the spirit of generosity and kindness that marked the event.”
Some 40 volunteers offered their services last year at Francisvale on the first anniversary of Casey’s death. Within an approximate 6 hour period, the entire interior of the facility was painted. Additional service included feeding the homeless in Philadelphia, making and serving dinners at the Ronald McDonald House in Chicago, cleaning up the parks in Springfield, PA and volunteering at Beacon Animal Shelter in Ocean View, N.J.
Likewise this year, friends and extended family outside of the area offered contributed time and much needed supplies to their local animal shelters, while others donated blood to the Red Cross.
The day concluded with an evening reception at the Feldman home. At dusk, with the background of some 19,000 pink lights twinkling in the background from the Casey tree, some 50 pink balloons were released into the sky accompanied by lots of love for Casey.