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Kelly Lucas Honored With Celebration Of Life Music Festival



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Loved ones of Newtown resident Kelly Lucas gathered at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 308 pavilion for a celebration of her life on Saturday, July 23.

Her longtime partner Russ Pagano, who is a former Newtown resident, organized the event to be a music festival, which is what she would have wanted.

Pagano performed with his Connecticut-based band ShadowPlay, rounded out by members Kerry Barret and John Cote.

At the start of the set, Pagano said, “I lost the most important person in my life six months ago.”

He hoped that through everyone gathered at the event on July 23 that her legacy would live on.

The trio had a set list of all Lucas’ favorite tunes and kicked off with “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison. Other songs included “Crystal Ball” by Styx, “Wanted Dead or Alive” by Bon Jovi, and a medley of Rush classics.

Special guests joined them throughout the afternoon, such as members of LimeLight, a tribute to Rush.

During the private event, there was also barbecuing, a 50/50 raffle, and a donation collection for FAITH Food Pantry in Newtown.

A poster collage of photos showing Lucas from over the years was on display by the collection table for everyone to enjoy. It was made by Pagano and Lucas’ friend Patti Rappaport, who made her way to Connecticut from Pennsylvania for the gathering.

Those who attended the Celebration of Life chatted about fond memories of Lucas, especially her oldest brother, Chris Allan.

Allan shared with The Newtown Bee that his sister was a very compassionate soul who loved dogs. She was also an incredibly hard worker who would “help anybody with anything.”

With a smile on his face, he added, “She was a great girl.”

Reporter Alissa Silber can be reached at alissa@thebee.com.

From left is ShadowPlay guitarist/vocalist Kerry Barrett, drummer/vocalist Russ Pagano, and bassist/vocalist John Cote performing “Brown Eyed Girl” in honor of Kelly Lucas during her Celebration of Life music festival at the VFW on Saturday, July 23. —Bee Photos, Silber
Kelly Lucas’ mother, Janet Mastrolillo, and brother Mark Sturges sit beside each other during the Celebration of Life event at the VFW on July 23.
A photo collage of Kelly Lucas was on display for people to view.
Family and friends of the late Kelly Lucas chatted with one another under the VFW pavilion before the band performed on July 23.
Members of the Connecticut band ShadowPlay, from left, Kerry Barrett, Russ Pagano, and John Cote attended the Celebration of Life for Kelly Lucas.
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