LOWER MANHATTAN — Everyone on Nassau Street knew Michael Rogalle.
The 58-year-old UPS worker from Teaneck, N.J., had the same route for three decades and he learned the names of everyone he met, from the restaurant workers to the babysitters pushing strollers, residents said.
So the community was devastated on April 17 when an SUV jumped the curb on Beekman Street and crushed Rogalle against an office building. He died of internal injuries five days later, his family said.
"He was the kind of person that when you see him, you smile," said Sharon Carr, who moved to Nassau Street in 1980 and met Rogalle a couple of years later.
"It wasn't just a job for him," Carr continued. "It was really his community, too."
Rogalle's three children visited the scene of the accident on Wednesday and met some of their father's longtime customers.
"They all say they're hurting too," said Chelsea Rogalle, 30, the eldest sibling. "It was really nice to hear those things."
Michael Rogalle worked for UPS for 39 years and loved his job, even though the 12-hour days were taxing, his daughter said.
On weekends, he liked to hunt and go camping, though his favorite times were those spent around the dinner table with his three children, eating roasted chicken or another one of his signature dishes, his daughter said.
Chelsea Rogalle described the past week since the accident as "hell on earth." She and her siblings — Patrick, 26, and Shannon, 24 — rushed to Rogalle's side at Bellevue Hospital Center on the evening of April 17 and found him in a medically induced coma, breathing through tubes.
They spoke to him, hoping he could understand, and stayed with him around the clock. He died of complications from his injuries on April 22, without ever waking up, Chelsea Rogalle said.
The driver of the SUV remained at the scene and police said there was no criminality.
Tina Schiller, a longtime Downtown resident whose apartment overlooks the crash site, said she was horrified when she realized Rogalle had been hurt. She dialed 911 after hearing the impact and then rushed down to the street.
"It's a really big loss," Schiller said. "He was the nicest guy you ever met in your life. He was sunshine to us, and there are so few people like that."
Memorial services will be held at the Volk Leber Funeral Home, 789 Teaneck Rd., Teaneck, N.J., April 27 from 7 to 9 p.m. and April 28 from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations to NYU Langone Medical Center or to Rogalle's children to help with expenses.