Timothy James “TJ” Dodge Jr., 19, of Rockland, was a second-year psychology student residing in Kennebec Hall. Old Town police Capt. Kyle Smart said the accident, located approximately half a mile north of the town line, was reported at 5:15 a.m.
Smart said there is no indication Dodge’s death was a suicide in response to rumors circulating regarding the nature of the crash.
“He was traveling north on Main Street at what we believe was a high rate of speed, left the right side of the road and struck a tree,” Smart said.
Dodge is believed to have died on impact. The Old Town stretch of Route 2 up to the Regency Trailer Park was blocked to traffic until about 10:30 a.m. Tuesday.
Pam Dodge, TJ’s mother, remembered her son’s love of sports and theater, saying he had won “99 million awards for that stuff.” She said TJ was always protective of his older sister and younger brother.
“He was more than willing to help out anyone who needed something,” Pam Dodge said. “TJ was the type that if he was with you, and friends were getting picked on … he would back you up. … No one messes with him and his friends. He was that protective.”
“When he was home, he was with us,” she added, describing a close-knit family. “Freshman year, he came home more.”
She said TJ began to spend more time at school after meeting his girlfriend.
According to his mother, TJ had once thought about studying business but settled on psychology instead due to a family history of mental health issues.
“I think it had to do with his father,” she said. “I think he wanted to understand his father and his issues.”
Pam Dodge said a memorial page has been set up on Facebook for anyone who wants to share photos memories of TJ.
“I’m glad I’m getting this support,” she said. “There’s a lot of people who are going to miss him.”
She announced on Facebook that TJ’s memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on April 27 at West Rockport Baptist Church in Rockport.
“Anytime we lose a student, the entire UMaine community feels the loss,” Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students Robert Dana is quoted as saying in a UMaine press release. “Our thoughts are with TJ’s family and friends. We extend our sincerest sympathies during this difficult time.”