Obituary: ‘Infectious’ perspective of life made Devino stand out

Obituary: ‘Infectious’ perspective of life made Devino stand out

By Derek Hawkins

Adrienne “AJ” Devino, a freshman communications major loved by her friends and family for her compassionate personality, eclectic interests and unique sense of style, died Saturday night in a snow tubing accident at Loon Mountain in Lincoln, N.H. She was 18.

Ms. Devino, a member of the Resident Student Association (RSA), was remembered as an understanding, outgoing and amiable young woman known for her kindness and her ability to bring people together.

“She was the glue of the family,” said her father Edward Devino. “She could make anyone cooperate. People fighting would be kissing at the end of the day because of her.”

Stephanie Filipek, a freshman business major, was Ms. Devino’s roommate in a double in Stetson East.

“She had this perspective on life that was infectious,” Filipek said. “When you were with her you just started to look at the world the way she did.”

Ms. Devino was constantly taking pictures, Filipek said, and the walls of their room were covered with her photographs.

“Her pictures are like a tribute to her now,” Filipek said. “It’s like there wasn’t an unhappy moment.”

Filipek said she was glad to have shared with Ms. Devino what she called “the freshman experience” – from exploring Boston to participating in campus events like the Underwear Run and the Amazing Husky Hunt.

Ms. Devino’s friend Lauren McGuinness, a freshman international business major who lived in the room next door, recalled Ms. Devino’s enthusiasm for what seemed like an endless number of activities.

“It was like a factory in her room,” she said. “There was always some half-finished project going on. She always had an outlet for all her creativity.”

Ms. Devino’s creativity was, for many, also reflected in her appearance and style. She wore her hair, which friends say she hadn’t cut since middle school, in braids that dangled below the middle of her back.

She made hand-crafted jewelry with her mother, Linda Devino, and occasionally wore a necklace made of moose bone from a hunting trip with her father.

Ms. Devino was also notorious for her countless pairs of flip-flops, which she sported even in the winter.

“AJ was a nonconformist,” her mother said. “She wanted to stand out, but she was always modest. It was never about AJ. She always had a great attitude.”

Ms. Devino was born July 11, 1988, in Middlebury, Vt., and lived in the small, rural town of West Addison, Vt., all her life.

She attended Vergennes Union High School, where she was student body president for three years, a member of the National Honor Society and the yearbook staff.

At Northeastern Ms. Devino was a Dean’s List student, a member of the Communications Club and the Public Relations Student Society of America.

“Northeastern not only has every aspect of an excellent school, but it makes me smile,” Ms. Devino wrote on her RSA application. “It’s no longer my school but my home and family.”

James O’Brien, a freshman psychology major, organized a candlelight vigil for Ms. Devino Monday night that drew a crowd of more than 200 students.

In addition to her parents, Ms. Devino is survived by three siblings, Brittany, 21, Cassandra, 14, and Edward, 12.

A memorial service will be held in Ms. Devino’s high school gymnasium at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

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