A sedan driven by Alysha Menzies apparently slammed into the back of a flatbed tow truck on westbound Route 3 near Route 120 in East Rutherford shortly after 4 a.m. Friday, May 6, responders said.
The flatbed was carrying a Mercedes SUV that fell onto her car, which burst into flames, they said. Police from East Rutherford and Secaucus were helpless against the inferno, which also burned the SUV.
Alysha was "the baby of the Menzies cousins," wrote
An athlete in both high school and college, Menzies played basketball and was a star track team shot putter at Garfield High School, making All-Bergen First Team as a senior. She continued her track career at East Stroudsburg (PA) University (Class of 2017).
She was always the life of the party, whether going out or hanging out -- and her energy, one friend said, "just magnified the night."
"Alysha was the most amazing person anyone ever knew," wrote Yolanda Richards of Garfield. " When she walked Into a room the whole place would light up with her energy. She had such a big heart and was the smartest thing walking.
"She always had her own style from the time she was born until the end of her days," added Richards, who established a GoFundMe account for Alysha's "home going service."
"Alysha always had a song in her head and her heart. She was the daughter and sister niece and friend we never knew we wanted," she added, "but we’re so blessed and privileged to have been a small speck in her grand life. We love you pretty girl and we will meet again soon."
TO DONATE: Alysha Menzies going home service (GoFundMe)
Tom Kaminski of WCBS Newsradio 880 was first with images from the scene:
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