Colin McNeill, a final-semester senior and four-year student-athlete, passed away last Wednesday, Nov. 28. McNeill, 22, of Little Falls, had been comatose since a skateboarding accident in mid-November.
McNeill was set to graduate this semester with a degree in social science and minor in law and society. He was a four-year member and two-year captain of the men's volleyball team at Ramapo. McNeill was also active in the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and served as co-president last year. He participated in the Bass Fishing Club, occasionally performed as "Rocky" the Roadrunner, built his own landscaping business and was a volunteer at the Little Falls Fire Department.
As a member of the volleyball team, McNeill appeared in 99 games and collected more than 525 kills. Throughout his four years, he earned the coach's award and a spot on the Athletic Director's All-Academic Honorable Mention Team.
Visitation services were held at the Bizub-Parker Funeral Home in Little Falls this past Sunday and Monday from 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. The Ramapo Athletics Department coordinated a free shuttle for interested students to attend the Sunday night visitation session. His funeral service was held Tuesday at 10:30 a.m.
McNeill is survived by his parents, Wendy and Roger, and sisters, Erin and Meredith.
Colin McNeill's friends and colleagues attest that he left a legacy at Ramapo, both on and off the court. Below, some of them share their sentiments on the late student-athlete.
"I knew Colin was a special person with a very big personality, who smiled and loved everyone, and I was simply amazed by all the people that he touched throughout the many communities he was a part of… I will miss him and his great smile, but his memory will never leave those who knew him."
-Don Vanderbeck, Head Coach of Men's Volleyball
"Colin was full of life; he put a smile on your face whenever he was around you. He will be greatly missed and will always stay in our hearts."
-Kate Levin, Assistant Director of Sports Information/Marketing/Planning
"He's not only one of the best student-athletes, but one of the best people I've ever met in my life… He made the coaches' jobs easier because he demanded and got the respect of all his fellow athletes. He was a model student-athlete overall."
-DJ Pinton, Athletic Facilities/Budget Coordinator and Head Coach of Men's Soccer
"There is not a time that I don't remember Colin with a smile on his face or him making the group of people around him laugh. His smile, laugh and kindhearted nature was so contagious… There is no one I know who loved and enjoyed life more than Colin. The amount of lives that Colin has touched is indescribable; he was Ramapo's No. 1 fan."
-Lindsey Jachens, last year's Co-president of SAAC
"Colin was an outstanding student-athlete, but a better person. He always had time for his teammates and coaches, as well as his friends… He always had a big smile ready, and he made you happy to see him as well. He enjoyed life."
-Chuck Gordon, Director of Athletics
"Colin had a great personality, and he was such a fun person. He was a gifted young man and easily won people over. He certainly won me over… I am so fortunate that I got to spend time with Colin and surround myself with such wonderful fun and kind student-athletes."
-Kathleen Finnegan, Associate Director of Athletics
"Colin was one of the kindest student-athletes to come through our department. His love for life was evident. His energy and charisma were contagious. His smile was and remains around every corner."
-Rachel Pinton, Director of Sports Information/Marking/Planning