A promising writer and brand-new Yale graduate Marina Keegan died at age 22 on Saturday, leaving behind wise words that are being celebrated today.
Just two days after graduating from college, Keegan was killed in a car crash Saturday afternoon in Cape Cod. The driver, Keegan's boyfriend Michael Gocsch, survived but was seriously injured. The young writer was due to start working in New York City at The New Yorker magazine, her dream job, according to The Yale Daily News.
A playwright and also a journalist for DealBook, Keegan once argued in her column that college students should pursue their dreams instead of taking high-paying jobs, and to live life to the fullest. The words have circulated the internet following her death.
"Maybe I'm overly optimistic, but I think most young, ambitious people want to have a positive impact on the world," wrote Keegan. "Whether it's through art or activism or advances in sciences, almost every student I spoke to had some kind of larger, altruistic goal in life."
"But what I heard again and again was that working at JPMorgan or Bain or Morgan Stanley was the best way to prepare oneself for a future doing public good," she continued.
One of the last things Keegan ever wrote is also resonating with those she left behind. In an essay for her commencement, Keegan wrote of the importance to enjoy life.
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"We don't have a word for the opposite of loneliness, but it we did, I could say that's what I want in life," wrote Keegan in the essay, which the Yale Daily News posted online Sunday.
She added that "the opposite of loneliness" is what she is "grateful and thankful to have found at Yale, and what I'm scared of losing when we wake up tomorrow and leave this place."
The young writer also included her aspirations in the final column, leaving behind another poignant message.
"What we have to remember is that we can still do anything," she wrote. "We can change our minds. We can go back … The notion that it's too late to do anything is comical. It's hilarious. We're graduating college. We're so young. We can't, we MUST not lose this sense of possibility because in the end, it's all we have."
While at Yale, Keegan once organized a protest challenging campus recruiting and boasting the slogan, "Take a stance, don't go into finance."
Additionally, the forward-thinking student was the president of the Yale College Democrats and graduated magna cum laude.
Keegan's family and friends are remembering the 22-year-old, and Yale Daily News organizers have asked that students submit memories and stories about her.
"We will edit only for grammar, and publish these memories to our blog in the coming week," said a statement on the website.
"She has an unbelievable, beyond-her-years way of looking at the world, and her passion was to try and use her words to explore the human condition," said Tracy Keegan, Marina's mother, according to the New York Daily News. "This is one of her legacies that she will leave behind."
Social media sites have been flooded with messages from those honoring Keegan. She leaves behind her parents, Tracy and Kevin Keegan, and brothers Trevor and Pierce.