McCaw honored at candlelight vigil
Holding lit candles in the air, more than 100 people from the Rutgers community and beyond chanted, “Let’s go,” a phrase former Rutgers student Billy McCaw would frequently say.
Students, family and friends gathered last night in remembrance of 22-year-old McCaw, who was found beaten to death Saturday morning in the backyard of a house on Hartwell Street.
McCaw’s friends and brothers of the Pi Kappa Phi fraternity organized the candlelight vigil on the steps of Brower Commons. McCaw, who transferred to Kean University in mid-January, was an integral member of the fraternity’s chapter during his time at Rutgers, according to nj.com.
A Tennessee native, McCaw lived in Flemington with his aunt Barbara Strosciak, who attended the vigil. She had seen him last Thursday and found out about his death after the police called her looking for McCaw’s car.
“It was shocking, but it’s unbelievable what his friends have organized here — it’s wonderful,” Strosciak said.
Peter Oh, McCaw’s friend, remembered McCaw as a long-standing fan of Rutgers sports who attend every game.
“He was the brightness of our house,” Oh said. “I am going to miss him coming to my room at eight in the morning on a game day, saying ‘let’s go.’”
McCaw’s father, Robert McCaw, who lit the first candle, told the crowd his family was blessed to have the support of all his friends, brothers and everyone in the Rutgers community.
“I thank you for being here and for showing outpouring love and support to our family,” Robert McCaw said.
In Billy McCaw’s memory, Mikaela Murphy, a School of Management and Labor Relations senior, read a letter to the crowd as she broke into tears.
Murphy said Billy McCaw used to spread happiness wherever he went.
Mike Cellitti, a Rutgers Business School junior, said he had known Billy McCaw for three years.
“Billy was one of the most kind-hearted individuals I have ever met,” Cellitti said. “He had the most distinctive laugh. I still hear it all day, every day I’m laughing.”
Kristina Schetelich, a resident of Pennsylvania and a friend of William McCaw’s mother, Mary McCaw, said she had not seen him since his family moved to Tennessee.
Schetelich said she found out about Billy McCaw’s death through Facebook.
“I was shocked, probably like everyone else,” she said.
Nj.com reported that investigation for Billy McCaw’s death is ongoing. On Monday, police circulated fliers describing what he was wearing and his approximate time of death.
“The investigation is continuing and is active,” said James O’Neill, a spokesman for Middlesex County prosecutor Andrew Carey, to nj.com.
Robert McCaw said his family seeks no revenge and would rather see the energy going into offering prayers for his son. They hope New Brunswick is made a safer place.
“We have a strong binding faith, and with the support of these communities here, we will be reunited in prayer, with a son, a brother, a friend, a nephew, a grandson and a teammate,” he said.