SPRING LAKE HEIGHTS, NJ — NJ Transit has identified the woman fatally struck last night by a train near the Wall Road crossing as Laurie Tobia, 25, of Lake Como.
The incident occurred at about 8:25 p.m. when the agency reported a “trespasser strike” with North Jersey Coast Line Train 4375 near the Spring Lake train station.
Train service was suspended in both directions for more than three hours between Belmar and BayHead, according to NJ Transit spokesman Nathan Rudy.
The circumstances surrounding Tobia’s death have not been released. No injuries were reported among NJ Transit passengers or employees related to the incident, authorities said.
Tobia was known in the Belmar/Lake Como area for her artistic ability to create the murals that adorn a handful of establishments throughout Belmar. Several years ago, she was an intern with the Belmar Arts Council, working with founding member Patricia Hutchinson and other artists on painting the mural on the Belmar train station’s southbound side.
“She was someone really special,” said Hutchinson. “She was talented, beautiful, the best. I got to know her pretty well, and to see this happen, I’m devastated by it.”
Tobia also worked with teachers and students at Belmar Elementary School to create a mural that fronts Main Street near 12th Avenue.
Tobia was a graduate of University of Delaware with a degree in psychology and studio arts, according to her LinkedIn profile. She also worked as an intern at Torche Gallery in Belmar.