Over the course of six weeks in 2012, the tri-state area of Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey was devastated by two events that will never be forgotten.
On Oct. 28, Super Storm Sandy barreled its way through the northeast, causing fatalities and destruction not seen in the area before.
On Dec. 14, a crazed gunman fatally shot and killed 26 students and faculty members at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut.
Nearly a year after the natural disaster, musicians from all walks came together to raise funds that would marry the two tragedies for good.
The concert, held in Highlands, New Jersey this past Sunday, was held to raise funds to build playgrounds in Sandy-ravaged towns in honor of those killed in Newtown. The project is called The Sandy Ground Project – Where Angels Play.
Among the performers, which included acts like Southside Johnny and Bon Jovi guitarist Bobby Bandiera, was a Long Valley band that came together to honor those who died in Connecticut.
Band 26, consisting of Kaitlin Fleming, a current senior at West Morris Central High School; Stephanie Turci and Conor Palecek, 2012 West Morris Central graduates; and Paul Fusco, a drummer who met the other three at another fundraiser last year, took the stage to perform two songs and opened the charity event.
The group of teens performed Mumford and Sons “I Will Wait” and Phillip Phillips’ “Gone Gone Gone.” The band also backed up pop start Alexis on “Knocking on Heaven’s Door.” The group also sang backup for Grammy-nominated artist Linda Chorney on her original song “Martin.”
To donate to the Sandy Ground Project, visit thesandygroundproject.org.
Information and photos provided by Kevin Fleming.