A former New Jersey high school football player shot to death early Sunday near Ohio State University is being remembered as a “light” in the lives of those who knew him.
Chase Meola, 23, a Mahwah native and fifth-year marketing major at Ohio State, was gunned down as he was leaving a party, officials said.
“He was always very outgoing. He’s from New Jersey, so he definitely had that loud, outgoing personality,” friend Ashley McCartney told Ohio television station 10 WBNS.
A GoFundMe set up to pay for funeral costs had already exceeded its $50,000 goal by Monday afternoon.
“He was light in everyone’s life and will be dearly missed by those he touched,” organizers wrote. The organizers, identified as friends of Meola’s, did not respond to a request for comment.
Meola, once a star football player for the Mahwah High School Thunderbirds, was earning an MBA, his LinkedIn said, with a goal of working on Wall Street.
“The Ohio State University community is in mourning, and our deepest condolences and support go to the family and friends of Chase,” the university said in a statement.
Meola was leaving a party around 2 a.m. on Sunday when an “altercation occurred outside,” university officials said. Meola was shot in an alley near the party and pronounced dead at the scene.
Kintie Mitchell Jr., 18, of Columbus, has been charged with murder. His first court date is on Tuesday, WCMH 4 reported.
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