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Dear Mr. And Mrs. Morgenstern,

I actually don’t remember when I first met Nancy but it must have been sometime in 1993, through all of our mutual friends. Over the following eight years I was lucky enough to have spent time with her on the Upper West Side, skiing, in Florida for Pesach, in the Hamptons, at barbeques on my balcony, and otherwise.

She had a very strong personality. I admired her focus and determination to succeed in the biking world. Maintaining strong Jewish values while pursuing your dream takes strength and courage and determination that a lot of people don’t have and can’t muster. To Nancy it wasn’t a question. It was always a discussion how difficult it was to find a guy in the community who could understand this merging of observance, athletic determination, and confidence, but it was never a reason to not pursue her own dreams. The hope was that in pursuing her dream she would find that soul mate and know she hadn’t settled. We went to party after party, a Camp Simcha weekend, Miami . . . everywhere we “should” be, but the “right guy” had yet to materialize.

One of my best memories comes from when I went with her to Snowmass, Colorado and finally met “the Crestwood boys” that she had been talking about for so long. While skiing with her, Nancy pushed me to surpass what I thought were my own limitations as she led me down a ski run I would never have dared to accomplish on my own. At the top of the ski lift we took off our skis and hiked up to the top of the mountain to ski on an “off trail” double diamond—The Wall. Now, Nancy was a far better skier than I, and I was a little nervous, but she was so confident that I could do it that I had no choice but to follow her down. That run gave me the confidence to know that I was more capable than even I knew.

Of course there was so much more to her, but it’s difficult to describe all of the little things that made her special. A few traits that stand out are that she had a big smile, a strong laugh, she made a great chocolate mousse trifle, she didn’t like guys who wore worn shoes, she had a real independent streak and wanted to live on her own, and she loved the guys at Cantor.

On September 13, 2001, I met you, Nancy’s parents, for the first time. I learned a lot about Nancy that day, as I’m sure you have since, by talking to and meeting her friends. At your request, I try to say Ashre [a prayer] whenever I can and I think of Nancy every time I do. I think I will for the rest of my life. It can only begin to fill the void caused by her absence.

Andrea Lehman

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Acknowledgments Introduction Testimonies Photo Gallery 1 Reflections from Nancy's Mother