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Hugo24
Jun 19th, 2009, 12:19 PM
HUNTINGTON BEACH - Colby Curtin, a 10-year-old with a rare form of cancer, was staying alive for one thing - a movie.

From the minute Colby saw the previews to the Disney-Pixar movie Up, she was desperate to see it. Colby had been diagnosed with vascular cancer about three years ago, said her mother, Lisa Curtin, and at the beginning of this month it became apparent that she would die soon and was too ill to be moved to a theater to see the film.

After a family friend made frantic calls to Pixar to help grant Colby her dying wish, Pixar came to the rescue.

The company flew an employee with a DVD of Up, which is only in theaters, to the Curtins' Huntington Beach home on June 10 for a private viewing of the movie.

The animated movie begins with scenes showing the evolution of a relationship between a husband and wife. After losing his wife in old age, the now grumpy man deals with his loss by attaching thousands of balloons to his house, flying into the sky, and going on an adventure with a little boy.

Colby died about seven hours after seeing the film.

With her daughter's vigil planned for Friday, Lisa Curtin reflected about how grateful she is that Pixar - and "Up" - were a part of her only child's last day.

"When I watched it, I had really no idea about the content of the theme of the movie," said Curtin, 46. "I just know that word 'Up' and all of the balloons and I swear to you, for me it meant that (Colby) was going to go up. Up to heaven."

Pixar officials declined to comment on the story or name the employees involved.

THE PREVIEWS

Colby was diagnosed with vascular cancer on Dec. 23, 2005 after doctors found a tumor in her liver. At the time of her death, her stomach was about 94 inches around, swollen with fluids the cancer wouldn't let her body properly digest. The rest of her body probably weighed about 45 pounds, family friend Carole Lynch said.

Colby had gone to Newport Elementary School and was known for making others laugh, family friend Terrell Orum said. Colby loved to dance, sing, swim and seemed to have a more mature understanding of the world than other children her age, Orum said.

On April 28, Colby went to see the Dream Works 3-D movie "Monsters Vs. Aliens" but was impressed by the previews to "Up."

"It was from then on, she said, 'I have to see that movie. It is so cool,'" Lynch said.

Colby was a movie fan, Lisa Curtin said, and she latched onto Pixar's movies because she loved animals.

Two days later Colby's health began to worsen. On June 4 her mother asked a hospice company to bring a wheelchair for Colby so she could visit a theater to see "Up." However, the weekend went by and the wheelchair was not delivered, Lisa Curtin said.

By June 9, Colby could no longer be transported to a theater and her family feared she would die without having seen the movie.

At that point, Orum, who desperately wanted Colby to get her last wish, began to cold-call Pixar and Disney to see if someone could help.

Pixar has an automated telephone answering system, Orum said, and unless she had a name of a specific person she wanted to speak to, she could not get through. Orum guessed a name and the computer system transferred her to someone who could help, she said.

Pixar officials listened to Colby's story and agreed to send someone to Colby's house the next day with a DVD of "Up," Orum recalled.

She immediately called Lisa Curtin, who told Colby.

"Do you think you can hang on?" Colby's mother said.

"I'm ready (to die), but I'm going to wait for the movie," the girl replied.

THE MOVIE

At about 12:30 p.m. the Pixar employee came to the Curtins' home with the DVD.

He had a bag of stuffed animals of characters in the movie and a movie poster. He shared some quirky background details of the movie and the group settled in to watch Up.

Colby couldn't see the screen because the pain kept her eyes closed so her mother gave her a play-by-play of the film.

At the end of the film, the mother asked if her daughter enjoyed the movie and Colby nodded yes, Lisa Curtin said.

The employee left after the movie, taking the DVD with him, Lynch said.

"He couldn't have been nicer," said Lynch who watched the movie with the family. "His eyes were just welled up."

After the movie, Colby's dad, Michael Curtin, who is divorced from Lisa Curtin, came to visit.

Colby died with her mom and dad nearby at 9:20 p.m.

Among the Up memorabilia the employee gave Colby was an "adventure book" - a scrap book the main character's wife used to chronicle her journeys.

"I'll have to fill those adventures in for her," Lisa Curtin said.


One more reason Pixar is awesome

:tears: RIP :sad:

~{X}~
Jun 19th, 2009, 04:23 PM
:sad: I am glad she got her final wish granted to her. Now she could be resting peacefully.

skanky~skanketta
Jun 19th, 2009, 04:58 PM
I'm feeling really sad for her parents.

rockstar
Jun 19th, 2009, 05:16 PM
wow, how sad :sad:

well done pixar though

égalité
Jun 19th, 2009, 05:24 PM
:bigcry:

young_gunner913
Jun 19th, 2009, 11:37 PM
:sobbing: so sad.

~Cherry*Blossom~
Jun 19th, 2009, 11:41 PM
Such a sad story :sobbing:

Good on Disney & Pixar! :yeah: Even though it took very little effort to do this most other big name companies wouldn't even have bothered.

Dandy_Warhol
Jun 20th, 2009, 03:36 PM
:sobbing:

i'm glad she got her wish. RIP Colby :hug:

good job Pixar :yeah:

flyingmachine
Jun 20th, 2009, 03:40 PM
:bigcry:

hdfb
Jun 20th, 2009, 03:45 PM
That's just so sweet....

Mynarco
Jun 20th, 2009, 04:06 PM
OMG Sad Stories :crying2:
but how come Pixar can be that efficient?

Ryan
Jun 20th, 2009, 04:37 PM
A hospital can't get them a wheelchair? :eek: WD Pixar. :D

eck
Jun 20th, 2009, 04:57 PM
:secret: Now it's your turn to go watch it ;)

OTOH, Well done Pixar. :worship:

moby
Jun 20th, 2009, 05:22 PM
I'm glad the girl got her last wish. :)

Good job from Pixar on both humanitarian and public relations fronts. :yeah:

alfonsojose
Jun 20th, 2009, 07:00 PM
Burn that DVD :devil:
Glad for her :yeah:

stevos
Jun 20th, 2009, 07:35 PM
I wonder if she was as disappointed as I was by that movie. And I even saw it in 3D!

(Sorry... good for pixar they are the best etc.)

KoOlMaNsEaN
Jun 20th, 2009, 08:10 PM
wow. Nice to know there are still people with hearts in big corps.
May she rest in peace.

Vanity Bonfire
Jun 20th, 2009, 08:37 PM
RIP Colby.

Bijoux0021
Jun 21st, 2009, 07:34 PM
http://www.rr.com/news/news/article/1110/8104783/California_girl_gets_dying_wish_to_see_movie_Up

Associated Press

California girl gets dying wish to see movie 'Up'

Published - Jun 19 2009 01:31PM EDT

http://i39.tinypic.com/2ivfrxd.jpg
(Carole Lynch, Orange County Register/AP)

This undated photo provided Friday, June 19, 2009
by family friend Carole Lynch shows Colby Curtin.
The 10-year-old, diagnosed in 2005 with
vascular cancer, desperately wanted to see
the new Disney-Pixar movie ''Up,''
but was too sick to go to a theater.

Colby Curtin got her final wish.

The 10-year-old girl desperately wanted to see the new Disney-Pixar movie, "Up." But the cancer-stricken girl was too sick to go to a theater.

Thanks to a family friend who got in touch with the movie studio Pixar, an employee of the Emeryville-based company arrived at Colby's home with a DVD copy of the movie, The Orange County Register reported Friday. The girl died later that night.

Colby's mother, Lisa, said she had asked her daughter if she could hang on until the movie arrived.

"I'm ready (to die), but I'm going to wait for the movie," she said her daughter replied.

"Up" is the animated tale of a grumpy old man who, after his wife's death, tries to fulfill their joint dream of visiting South America by tying thousands of balloons to his house and floating away.

"When I watched it, I had really no idea about the content of the theme of the movie," Colby's mother told the Register. "I just know that word 'Up' and all of the balloons and I swear to you, for me it meant that (Colby) was going to go up. Up to heaven."

Colby, who was diagnosed with vascular cancer in 2005, saw previews for the film in April.

"It was from then on, she said, 'I have to see that movie. It is so cool,'" family friend Carole Lynch said.

But the girl's health began to deteriorate. On June 4, Curtin asked a hospice company to bring a wheelchair so that her daughter could go to a movie theater but the chair was not delivered over the weekend, Curtin said.

By June 9, Colby was too sick to go anywhere.

Another family friend, Terrell Orum, called both Pixar and Disney, which owns the animation studio. The message was received by Pixar officials, who agreed to send someone to Colby's house the next day with a copy of "Up" for a private screening, Orum said.

The employee arrived with the DVD, stuffed animals of characters and other movie memorabilia.

Colby was unable to open her eyes to see the movie so her mother described the scenes. When her mother asked if she enjoyed it, the girl nodded, Curtin said.

The Pixar employee left after the movie, taking the DVD, which has not been released. Lynch, who was with the family during the screening, said the employee's "eyes were just welled up."

A call to Pixar seeking comment was not immediately returned Friday.

Colby, with her parents nearby, died later that night.

Her mother said one of the memorabilia left by the Pixar employee was an "adventure book" based on a scrapbook that, in the movie, is kept by the wife of the main character.

"I'll have to fill those adventures in for her," Lisa Curtin said of her daughter.
===============================


:sad: So sad and sweet at the same time. From reading the story, I get the feeling that she really is in heaven.

R.I.P., Colby!:hug:

Vanity Bonfire
Jun 21st, 2009, 08:14 PM
There's already a thread about this - but still, very touching story.