“My roommate and I kind of put on movie nights, pretty much every Friday or every other Friday, and he was definitely the most regular attendee for that,” Sappenfield said.
She said Tyler changed her life for the better and is still affecting her today.
“I feel like he was one of those people who came into my life and then changed it and made me a better person as a result,” Sappenfield said. “His generosity and dedication to others just made me want to be a better person and continues to make me want to be a better person every day, and that’s something I will never forget.”
First-year Kate Mace said Tyler was one of the kindest people she knew. She said he made her feel both safe and included.
“Wherever I was with him, it didn’t really matter who else was there, I just knew I had a friend within that group," Mace said. "I knew I felt included because he was there, and he was always kind of looking out for everybody who was there."
Kirk Cobb, a first-year from Lehigh University, went to high school with Tyler and considers him to have been one of his best friends.
“I could say he’s genuinely probably the least judgmental and most understanding friend I’ve ever had in my whole life,” Cobb said.
Tyler’s mother, Whitney D’Allaird, said he was very bright and loved music. Even in preschool Tyler’s intelligence showed through, when an incident at the school playground brought his mom to the director’s office to pick up Tyler.
“I said, 'Tyler what happened, what did you do on the playground?'” Whitney said. “He said, 'Mom, I was playing with a dump truck and a front-end loader and my teacher told me I had to give one away, and she didn’t realize you can’t use one without the other — they work together.'”
Caring deeply about his friends, Tyler valued both friendship and generosity. He would look out for others and loved his friends and family.
“I think he valued people for exactly who they were and didn’t judge, and I think he would want people to recognize that,” Whitney said.