COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Reagan Tokes’ death sent shock waves throughout the Short North community and throughout Ohio.
Police say the 21-year-old Ohio State University Student was killed by parolee Brian Golsby.
READ MORE: A timeline of Golsby’s alleged crimes
Prior to her death, Tokes was an active youth member of the Maumee United Methodist Church. Her family told NBC4 her Christian faith taught her to help people who are less fortunate than herself.
Nile Woodson, who lives in an apartment above Bodega, where Tokes worked, said customers knew the 21-year-old well.
“She was a loving, awesome, amazing person,” Woodson said.
Tokes was studying psychology and was months from graduating before she was killed. The Ohio State University Board of Trustees approved a posthumous degree for Tokes. Ohio State’s College of Arts and Sciences recommended Reagan Tokes be awarded a Bachelor of Arts degree. The degree was conferred during Spring Commencement on May 7.
Tokes’ family sent out the following statement:
“Reagan Delaney Tokes wanted to be a buckeye ever since she was a little girl. Today her dream became a reality as she was awarded a diploma from The Ohio State University. As her parents and family, we are so proud of her and her accomplishment. It is heartbreaking that she was not able to accept the diploma herself but we are so grateful to the University for presenting it to us to accept for her.
The opportunity for a college education is a gift. Along with this gift one must also have desire, dedication, discipline and determination. Reagan had all of this and then some and so did all the other students today who received their diploma. We congratulate them on their achievement and ask that they take their gift and use it to make a difference in this world, make it a better place as Reagan wanted to do but now isn’t able to do so physically.
She has made a difference in this world however and her spirit all around us continues to do so. She has inspired so many to get involved, to bring about change, to love and care for one another and most importantly to restore and reaffirm their love for God. Love is ultimately the only thing that matters and love never fades away or dies. Love is also the most important ingredient of success. Without it, life echoes emptiness. With it, life vibrates warmth and meaning. Even in hardship, love shines through. The love we have for our daughter allows us to celebrate her accomplishment today and to find the strength to continue to live our lives and and try to make a difference in this world ourselves. Love overcomes everything including evil.
Once again our family has been so blessed by tremendous generosity and kindness the entire community has showered upon us this visit to Columbus. We are so humbly grateful for all the generous contributions and gestures that have been done for us and our family. Our hearts are constantly being replenished by all these acts of love.
With immeasurable gratitude and sincerity,
The Tokes Family”
State representative David Leland was at the ceremony, where he said he had the chance to speak with Tokes’ family.
“I sat behind Reagan tokes family on May 7th at the graduation ceremony at OSU. It was completely accidental that I would be sitting behind them, but I watched them as they walked up to the podium in front of 60-70 thousand people and my heart went out for them. And all I can say to them is we are going to do all we humanly possibly can do to make sure this never happens to someone else,” Leland said.
Wednesday at 6pm, NBC4 Investigates talks with states representatives who say GPS ankle monitors, like the one Golsby wore while allegedly committing the above crimes, gives a false sense of security.