Kevin James Reinhard is a young man that was taken too soon from this earth while defending his country. He had a zeal for life that many people could only aspire to. Kevin was passionate about his commitment to family and friends. He was easy to love and get along with. He was quick to make friends and dedicated to each and every one of them. Kevin loved the little things in life: a good slice of pizza from Joey D’s, a grease truck's fat sandwich, fixing up his car… and sometimes destroying it in the process. The beach, no matter what time of year, was always a favorite place to visit for Kevin. Be it a sunny day of August or a bitter cold day of January, Kevin loved to walk the boardwalk with his family and friends. If it wasn’t the beach, it was a long drive to nowhere just so he could hear his car’s engine purr down the parkway. Kevin reveled in feeling the wind blow past his face while driving any vehicle. From little league, to soccer, to playing JV and varsity volleyball at Saint Joseph High School and playing volleyball at the college level for Ramapo his freshman year of college, he was always athletic.
Kevin was a loving son who would do anything and everything for his family, a young man who would put his friends and loved ones before himself on any day, and a best friend and confidant to his older sister and only sibling. Kevin was the sort of man who held open doors for anyone, who would give you the shirt off his back if he saw you needed one; he was always considerate, always a joker. If you knew Kevin, you knew he had a great sense of humor from being an all around goofball, the particular way he would read his birthday cards with the family, dying his hair purple, and planning on wearing a kilt when his sister got married in the future. If you were down, he knew how to pick you up. When he was down, he surrounded himself with love and used humor to pick himself right back up again.
Kevin attended Saint John Vianney for grade school, followed by Colonia Middle. After attending Ramapo College, he transferred to Middlesex County College. However, before graduating, Kevin felt he needed to answer a call to serve his country. In the spring of 2008, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and attained the rank of Corporal. He was a crew chief, flying on a Sikorsky Sea Stallion with HMH 363 – the Lucky Red Lions. Kevin loved flying; he had dreamt of being a jet pilot as a boy, but once eighth grade came around, he soon realized that he would be too tall at over 6 feet for that dream. Descriptions of flying around base in Hawaii, observing the tropical scenery, and whale watching out of the side of his helicopter were all frequent talking points in phone calls home.
On January 19, 2012, we lost a very dear member of our family, Kevin James Reinhard. Kevin, only 25 years old, was the first member of the military from Woodbridge to die in Afghanistan since combat first started. Kevin only had a few short weeks left to his deployment when his helicopter crashed, resulting in his death. It was his second deployment and was supposed to be his last as he only had one more year left to his enlistment. For his family and friends, he was already a hero before he ever put on a uniform for his country. The uniform only announced to the rest of the world what a wonderful man, soul, and hero he was for all of us.
Saint Joseph High School (Metuchen, NJ) dedicated their Summer 2012 "TODAY" - News for Alumni, Parents, and Friends Newspaper to Kevin's life and sacrifice. It is a beautiful collection of memories from past teachers, friends, family, and classmates.