Junior international business major Ryan Alley passed away on Friday, March 23 after injuries sustained during a car crash the previous Friday morning.
Julia Hill, senior finance major, called him the “nicest guy who got along with everyone.”
“I met (Alley) because he worked at my gym in Flemington. He was very outgoing and friendly, so I naturally would talk to him whenever I was working out. I soon found out he attended TCNJ and also commuted just like me, and that his mom had been my middle school German teacher,” Hill said. “It was fun to hang out with (Alley) because you could literally talk to him about anything. He was really funny and was a true friend.”
Similar sentiments were shared by senior math education major Jonathan Sisto.
“(Alley) was one of the most genuine and nice guys that I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing,” he said. “He was the kind of guy whose positive outlook on life was contagious to all the people around him. To me, (Alley) was a co-worker, a classmate, a friend and a role model.”
Even those who only had not known Alley for very long spoke highly of his character.
“I only had the privilege of knowing Ryan for a short amount of time, but he was one of the kindest and most hard working people I have ever met,” said Samantha Codner, junior accountancy major. “From the second I met him, I could tell he was a really genuine person and had a heart of gold. I feel blessed to have met him and he will truly be missed.”
According to the Ewing Police Department, the accident occurred at 2:05 a.m. on March 16.
A nearby officer heard a loud crash and found a black Infiniti off the roadway and up against a tree on the corner of Lower Ferry and Hillside, reports said.
“It appeared the vehicle was traveling northbound on Lower Ferry Road and did not negotiate the bend in the road,” said Lt. Rocco Maruca of Ewing Police.
First aid squads arrived and transported the two passengers to the Trauma Center at Helene Fuld Medical Center in Trenton, where both males were in critical condition, police said. Alley was driving with 22-year-old Michael Krassan, a senior studying political science and Rusian, from Easthampton.
According to Maruca, the cause of the accident is still under investigation by Officer Frank Provenzano and the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office.
Dean of business William Keep said Alley took academics seriously and had a 4.0 GPA. Keep also said Alley took on the challenge of learning to speak Russian, and Hill said he talked about potentially using his business and foreign language skills for a military job in the future. According to school of business coordinator of student services Erica Kalinowski, Alley was looking to spend next year studying abroad in Russia.
“He was motivated, mature and passionate about his studies as well as his future,” she said. “I always looked forward to our advisement meetings and I’m truly sad at the wonderful individual that our community has lost.”
Funeral services will be held Friday, March 30 at 10:30 a.m. in the Holcombe-Fisher Funeral Home at 147 Main St. in Flemington, with burial at Rosemont Cemetery to follow. Calling hours on Thursday from 2 to 4 p.m. and then from 6 to 9 p.m., according to the funeral home’s website.
Condolences may be sent through holcombefisher.com, and memorial contributions may be made to Jingle Elves, a community outreach program.
“It is a tragedy whenever our campus loses someone so young, and our sympathies are with Ryan’s family and loved ones. He will be missed by his classmates, professors, friends and many more,” said Matthew Golden, associate vice president for college relations.
Krassan remains in critical condition.
“Michael Krassan was the most senior member of our fraternity, an active role model within the fraternity, and incredible organizer and leader of the various functions we as a fraternity endorse,” said Keith Knutzen, president of the Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity and junior marketing major. “We would like to thank all of TCNJ Greek Life, the school’s administration, Dave Conner the Greek Life Advisor, and all other parties who have offered their support during this trying time. We have reached out to the family of (Krassan) as they have been struggling through this time and we have offered them our support and sympathy.”