March 17, 2014 at 7:09 AM
NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - Hundreds of community members gathered Sunday night for a candlelight vigil to honor and celebrate Victoria A. “Tori” Crisafi, who lost her life in a car accident on Thursday.
Friends and family filled Veterans Memorial Park. Volunteers handed out candles and cups to the crowd, who lit the candles upon the arrival of Tori’s immediate family. The family and close friends made their way to the center of the park where a dedicative placard for Tori had already been assembled. The placard – festooned with balloons of the New Providence Pioneer’s white, green, and gold – featured Crisafi's picture and some commemorative words. Attendees gathered around the family and the placard.
Several of Tori’s friends spoke, remembering the 2012 New Providence High School graduate as loved, unforgettable and irreplaceable. Her father said, “We all love her, and we all miss her. You’ll forever be in my heart.”
With the police’s cooperation, the Crisafi family led the gatherers across the street to Our Lady of Peace Church, to the church parking lot. Here, more of her close friends and family spoke of Tori, telling the assembled crowd that she was genuine, energetic, outspoken, and strong-willed.
After the final speaker, attendees were invited to congregate inside the Parish Hall and gymnasium for refreshments and to further remember Tori.
The candelight vigil was a true community effort. The candles were donated by Scott and Judy McGrath of McGrath’s Hardware, the balloons by Dawn Sherman, and the refreshments by Father Bill at OLP.
New Providence High School student Alli Lamhing, along with others, helped to organize the vigil. “This town is not only a community; we are a family. So at the end of the day, we must be here for each other during times of tragedy to pull one another up,” Lamhing said.