Nikki Kellenyi was an 18 year-old senior at Washington Township High School in NJ who was looking forward to her senior prom, graduation, and attending college in the fall. Nikki’s 18 year-old driver and classmate failed to notice two stop signs and drove into the path of a pick-up truck while Nikki was seated in the back seat of the car. Trapped in the wreckage for almost an hour, Nikki died as she was being extricated from the vehicle by rescuers. The cause of the accident was listed as “driver inattentiveness”, which witnesses attributed to cell phone usage at the time of the crash.
Nikki excelled in academics receiving Student of the Month Awards numerous times and was accepted into the National Honor Society for Business. Nikki’s name was on the Principal’s List and Honor Roll throughout high school, all while holding down two part-time jobs. On the afternoon of the accident, Nikki had committed to attending Rider College with a scholarship as a business major.
Nikki loved riding horses and owned many but her favorite was a beautiful Quarter Horse named Maggie. Nikki and Maggie were the perfect team together. Winning numerous ribbons, they took their talent to win many Grand Champion titles at the state, county and private show levels.
Mufti-talented, Nikki won VIP awards for basketball and excelled at cheerleading, dancing, and gymnastics. Nikki loved her dogs – Shep, Anna and Rocco and enjoyed having fun with her dear friends and days on the beach. However, Nikki was the happiest when she would spend time with her best friend…her sister Kristen. Only a year apart in age the two shared everything from clothes to friends.
Nikki’s parents, Mike and Gina, have been active in the fight to end distracted driving and have established the non-profit organization, PADD.org – People Against Distracted Driving. Among their many efforts, the Kellenyis were instrumental in the passage of ‘Nikki’s Law”, requiring the NJ State Department of Transportation to erect signage on highways reminding drivers of the illegality of texting while driving. @paddorg