Two University of Central Missouri students are being remembered after both died in a recent car crash.
Fletcher Reeves was driving eastbound on Northwest Division Road on Sept. 28 when the vehicle traveled off the left side of the road, hit a tree and caught fire, according to a Missouri State highway patrol report. Akhtar Abdullah was the passenger.
Reeves was a a junior open-option student from Pleasant Hill, Missouri. He was part of the UCM chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America and the rugby team.
Abdullah was a freshman finance major and Pakistani student from Kuwait, according to a campuswide email.
As soon as the news broke, friends and family members of Reeves and Abdullah went to social media to celebrate the lives of the two students by posting memories and condolences.
Alyssa Quintos, junior hospitality management major, said she met Reeves during homecoming two years ago.
“My sorority Alpha Gamma Delta and his fraternity, Theta Chi, were partners for homecoming,” Quintos said. “He was my cheer partner. One of my favorite memories was taking him to my semiformal and seeing him have the time of his life. He was always smiling and always welcomed new friends with open arms.”
At one point during college, Quintos was struggling.
“He (Reeves) was one of my first friends who helped me through a really hard time. I just wish I could’ve helped him through his,” Quintos said. “He always put his friends first and himself second. Hands down one of the most selfless, kind-hearted people I’ve ever known.”
Katie Kim, senior international studies major, said she met Abdullah at an international student event last year.
“He was always ready to make new friends,” Kim said. “He could make any new student feel at home here. He was goofy, spontaneous and brave.”
Kim said he was always kind and made sure to say “hello” every time he saw her.
On Facebook, many more who knew the two students send thoughts.
Ibrahim Bin Khalid Alageel, former president of the Saudi Club, said Abdullah was one of the best people who came to study at UCM. He said their brotherly relationship began after Abdullah came to a Saudi Club meeting.
Taylor Meeks, an acquaintance of Reeves, used Facebook to express her feelings.
“My first impression of Fletcher was when I was approached by him and his father in one of the toughest, most isolated times in my life, and I was greeted and talked to as if I had been a close family-friend whom they had known forever,” Meeks wrote. “Fletcher saw people for more than their reputations or their flaws. He touched the lives of many others, offering them kindness and his genuine interest in their wellbeing.”
Services for Reeves were held Oct. 6 at Stanley-Dickey Funeral Home. A celebration of life was on Oct. 7 at Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church.
A prayer service in honor of Abdullah was held on Oct. 5 at the Islamic Center of Warrensburg. There was also a celebration of Abdullah on Wednesday evening in the Union Bowling Center.