Karol Grzegorczyk
32 years old

Residents at the London Terrace Apartments in Chelsea knew Karol Grzegorczyk as the shy, friendly doorman.

“He always fought through his insecurity to smile and engage,” said Andy Humm, president of the building’s tenants association, “Maybe he was improving his English or trying to gain confidence, but he got to know everyone.”

Grzegorczyk was born during the Papacy of John Paul II -- formerly Karol Wojtyla -- and named after him.

When he wasn’t manning his doorman’s post, Karol was studying. He diligently worked through a test prep program and reported in an online profile that, last year, he’d been accepted into business school. “You could tell he was constantly improving himself,” Humm said.

When Karol died, many London Terrace residents made the trip to Greenpoint, Brooklyn, for his wake. They also rallied to make donations to his wife, Margaret, who was pregnant with their first child.

This collision happened on August 18, 2014 near Fresh Pond Road between 60 Drive and Elliott Avenue in Queens. See details in the Mean Streets Tracker.

Mean Streets 2014: Who We Lost, How They Lived

Throughout 2014, WNYC tracked the 265 men, women and children killed in traffic crashes in New York City. In addition to reporting the circumstances of their deaths, we looked at who they were in life: mothers, fathers, grandparents, students, recent immigrants and native New Yorkers. To read some of their stories, click on a photograph.