The accident happened in the eastbound lanes at Grand Avenue East around 4 a.m., completely shutting down the roadway for nearly eight hours.
Authorities say a male pedestrian was struck by a truck near the entrance ramp and dragged a substantial distance onto the highway.
There are no sidewalks lining the highway, so it is believed the victim was walking along the side of the road at the time.
Traffic was diverted off the highway, and bumper-to-bumper traffic was backed up for miles. One lane reopened around 9 a.m., but it was not fully open until just prior to noon.
Friends of the victim ran to the scene, devastated by the tragedy.
"I'm so sad to hear this," friend Gregory Baxter said. "I just seen him yesterday. I can't believe it. Life is so short."
Investigators were looking into the possibility that the truck driver was unaware he or she had hit someone.
"Everybody loved him," friend Aaron Batten said. "From the kids to the adults, loved him."
The Bergen County prosecutor and sheriff were both on the scene, and the investigation is ongoing. The victim has not yet been identified, but sources say the family has been notified.