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One killed and six hurt in Nelson Twp. crash

One person was killed and several others injured in this two-vehicle crash north of Cedar Springs Wednesday evening, October 16. Post photo by J. Reed.

One person was killed and several others injured in this two-vehicle crash north of Cedar Springs Wednesday evening, October 16. Post photo by J. Reed.

UPDATED: An 88-year-old Bailey woman was killed Wednesday night when the car she was riding in pulled out in front of another vehicle at the corner of Egner and Cedar Springs Avenue.

According to Sgt. Ben Cammenga, of the Kent County Sheriffs Department, a 2008 Ford Taurus wagon was eastbound on Egner and stopped at the stop sign at Cedar Springs Avenue about 6:22 p.m. The driver, Judy Mae Ranger, 69, of Brohman, attempted to turn north on to Cedar Springs Avenue, and turned in front of a 2008 Saturn that was southbound. The driver of the Saturn, Kristy Lynn Beemer, 28, of Sand Lake, attempted to avoid the Taurus, and swerved into the northbound lane, where both vehicles collided.

Ranger, the driver of the Taurus, suffered bumps and bruises. The front seat passenger, Herbert Donald Smith, 92, from Twin Lakes, suffered an injured hand and injured stomach. The backseat passenger, Kathleen Fernn Bitely, 88, of Bailey, was pronounced dead at the scene. All were wearing seatbelts.

Beemer, the driver of the Saturn, was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries. She had blood on her lungs, and suffered an injured hip and ribs. AeroMed was initially called, but could not fly because of the weather.

The front seat passenger, Michael Rock McBride, 30 suffered a broken femur and wrist. A 5-year-old female suffered bumps and bruises, and a 3-year-old female suffered two broken femurs. The driver was reportedly not wearing a seatbelt, but McBride was, and the children were in car seats.

Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the crash.

Assisting at the scene was the Cedar Springs Fire Department and Michigan State Police.

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2 Responses to “One killed and six hurt in Nelson Twp. crash”

  1. Erin Emmorey says:

    That has always been a scary intersection. I grew up on Egner and people drive way too fast down Cedar Springs Ave. it’s always a guessing game pulling out there.

  2. Barbara Eck says:

    SHAME on the writer of this article. The 88 year old woman that was killed in the accident was my mother. My sister was the driver and her scapula is broken in 2 places. I hardly consider a scapula that is broken in 2 places as ‘bumps and bruises’ as your reporter reported!!! Herbert Smith suffered a broken sternum, bleeding in his stomach and eventually requiring partial removal of his intestines. He later died from complications from the accident.

    You might want to report what the speed was of the car that CAME OVER INTO into the oncoming lane. Yes my sister made a left hand turn, like we all have. Fortunately for us we didn’t have someone coming over a hill driving like a bat out of hell because she was ‘late’ and was fighting with her passenger.

    Out of 3 people in the vehicle my sister was driving, 2 have died. Clearly what this paper reports is not worth the paper it is written on for accuracy and lines the bottom of the bird cage better than it gives accurate information!

    My mother was 88 years young and will be missed by a large community of friends and family that treasured her for all the help she gave to anyone who needed it.

    Thank you to Erin who left the comment above, and summed the accident up much more accurately than the reporter for the post did.


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