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Published: Sunday, 2/26/2006

Sylvania woman struck by car at Ohio State in October dies

A Sylvania woman who was hit by a car in October while riding her bicycle across a Columbus intersection died Friday in Flower Hospital.

Nichole Meifert, 21, was hit in the crosswalk of Lane Avenue at Tuttle Park on Oct. 13 by a vehicle driven by Joshua DiBari, 17, of Columbus.

She was taken to the Ohio State University Medical Center in critical condition. She remained there unconscious and in a coma for months.

She was transferred to the Arbors at Sylvania about a month ago and died Friday morning in the hospital.

The Lucas County coroner's office is reviewing her medical records to determine the cause of death, said Dr. Cynthia Beisser, a deputy coroner.

Ms. Meifert was a 2002 graduate of Northview High School and was a senior at Ohio State University where she was studying wildlife and forestry.

Several fund-raising events have been organized by OSU students and staff since the accident to help the Meifert family with medical costs.

Green rubber bracelets inscribed PUSH (Pray Until Something Happens), one of the initial fund-raisers, are worn by people throughout the world for Nikki, as she was called by family and friends.

"It was just a visible show of love and support for her," said her father, Edward Meifert.

"Everybody who knew her said she was the most determined, strong girl they knew and they could look to her for whatever support they needed."

At OSU, she was a member of the girls' rowing team and was vice president of the Terraqua Club.

At Northview, she was a member of the broomball team.

She volunteered at the Toledo Area Humane Society, was a summer intern with the Ohio Division of Wildlife at Crane Creek State Park, and worked at the Sylvania Veterinary Clinic and the Toledo Zoo.

She was a member of St. George Orthodox Cathedral, where she was vice president of a youth group and helped build homes for the homeless in Mexico.

Surviving are her parents, Edward and Rhonda Meifert; sister, Stacy Meifert; brother, Eddie Meifert, and grandmothers, Kathryn Meifert and Rosemary Saba.

Services will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday in St. George Orthodox Cathedral, 3754 Woodley Rd., where visitation will be from 6 to 9 p.m. tomorrow and after 3 p.m. Tuesday.

Trisagion prayer services will be at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow and Tuesday in the church.

Arrangements are by the Foth-Dorfmeyer Mortuary.

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