Students, family gather to mourn loss of Kent student


Vigil held for Nick Massa at Kent State’s Manchester FIeld on Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016.

Taylor Kerns

Embraces were shared and encouraging words were exchanged Tuesday night as a large crowd gathered in Manchester Field to remember Nicholas Massa, the 18-year-old freshman who was shot and killed Sunday.

Sobs rose from the crowd as candles were lit and Massa’s friends and family spoke. According to them, Massa was enjoying his time at Kent State.

“I’d never seen Nick so happy as he was to be here at Kent,” Jackie Massa, Nick’s mother, said.

Massa’s sister, Jess, said that Nick was popular and generally well liked.

Nick Massa Vigil from on Vimeo.

“He was just a fun loving kid and meant no harm to anybody,” she said.

The Massa family expressed gratitude for the vigil and the support they’ve received from the Kent State community.

“Nick loves you all right now,” Joe Massa, the victim’s father, said. 

After statements from loved ones, the crowd sang along as ‘Amazing Grace’ was played. A moment of silence followed.

A GoFundMe campaign has been launched to assist the Massa family in handling Nick’s final expenses. Massa’s brothers in Alpha Tau Omega urged the gathering to donate to the fund and share the page. More than $12,000 has been raised so far.

Taylor Kerns is the parking and transportation reporter. Contact him at [email protected].