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River Forest student dead in crash on way home from Indiana University

This was scene Saturday after second fatal crash Interstate 65. In first crash John J. Malone Jr. 20 River Forest

This was the scene Saturday after a second fatal crash on Interstate 65. In the first crash, John J. Malone Jr., 20, of River Forest, was killed. Then, Melissa Gelenas, 51, of Valparaiso, Ind., died when the car she was in crashed into backed-up traffic.

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Updated: June 6, 2013 7:29AM

A college student from River Forest was killed in a car crash Saturday as he and three friends headed home from Indiana University, and less than an hour later a Valparaiso, Ind., woman died when the car she was in lost control as it approached backed-up traffic near the first crash scene.

John J. Malone Jr., 20, died after being ejected from a rear seat of a Ford Explorer sport-utility vehicle about 60 miles south of Chicago on Interstate 65 shortly before 2 p.m., police said. The Explorer rolled and landed on Malone after blowing a tire.

Michael D. Rendy, 20, of La Grange, also ejected, was airlifted to Christ Hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Driver Mario Guagliado, 20, of Deerfield, was at Jasper County Hospital with hand, elbow and face injuries. A front-seat passenger, Jacob Newman, 20, of La Grange, wasn’t hurt.

Later, a car approaching the scene of Malone’s death lost control, killing passenger Melissa Gelenas, 51.

Relatives at the Malone home Saturday night said he was a sophomore business student who came from a big, close-knit family, played basketball at Fenwick High School in Oak Park and picked IU in part to be near his older sister and 17 cousins.

“He was the greatest kid and a natural student,” said his aunt, Donna Hanrahan. “He had a great sense of humor and loved playing tricks on people.”

A cousin, Abby Hanrahan, said Malone “was enjoying college” and was a popular kid. “In all his photos on Facebook, he’s surrounded by girls,” she said.

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