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Tag Archive | "motorcycle crash"

State Trooper dies from injuries in motorcycle crash 


Tpr. Timothy O’Neill

It is with the utmost sadness that the Michigan State Police (MSP) confirms that Tpr. Timothy O’Neill of the Rockford Post has passed away as a result of injuries sustained in an on-duty motorcycle crash Wednesday morning, September 20.

“It is with a very heavy heart that I confirm the death of one of our own, Tpr. Timothy O’Neill,” stated Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, director of the MSP. “I ask that you please keep his family and friends in your thoughts and prayers in the difficult days ahead.”

O’Neill was on patrol on his department motorcycle at approximately 7:45 a.m. Wednesday morning when he was involved in a crash near the intersection of Wolverine Boulevard NE and Belding Road NE in Plainfield Township. No one else was injured, and the crash remains under investigation.

O’Neill, 28 years of age, enlisted with the MSP in January of 2014, graduating as a member of the 126th Trooper Recruit School. He has served at the Rockford Post his entire career.

O’Neill is survived by his mother, father, brother, sister and fiancé. He was set to be married on October 7, 2017.

The MSP wishes to acknowledge our many law enforcement partners and emergency responders who assisted at the scene and who continue to provide support to our department during this difficult time. We also want to thank the staff and medical professionals at Spectrum Health Butterworth for their outstanding care.

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Sparta soldier killed in motorcycle crash


Joshua Daniel VanBelzen Facebook photo.

A 26-year-old Sparta man died on Saturday, August 26, when his motorcycle crashed into a pickup truck in southeast Michigan.

Joshua Daniel VanBelzen, 26, had attended an event hosted by Foundation 14, a veteran’s riding group, at a restaurant and bar in Lenawee County. After the event, VanBelzen was heading east on US12 and was west of the public access to Allen Lake when he went into a curve and crossed the centerline. His motorcycle hit a pickup truck, driven by William Szentmiklosi, 90, of Addision.

VanBelzen was pronounced dead at the scene. He was reportedly wearing a helmet. It’s unknown whether alcohol was involved.

The driver of the pickup and his wife, Elizabeth, a passenger in the pickup, went to the hospital to be checked out.

A group of fellow riders came upon the scene shortly after the crash but did not witness it.

VanBelzen did a tour in Afghanistan and was currently serving in the Army Reserves as a drill sergeant, according to his obituary. He was also working as a Federal Corrections officer.

His obituary said that Josh touched many lives, had an amazing sense of humor and could always be counted on to make some smart remark. “He always had a smile and loved cars, trucks and motorcycles. Josh was trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation,” it said.

Services for Josh will be held on Friday, Sept. 1, at Sparta Baptist Church at 11:00 a.m. Family will meet visitors on Thursday, August 31 from 2-4:00 and 6-8:00 p.m. at Hessel-Cheslek Funeral Home and on Friday at the church for 1 hour prior to the service from 10-11:00 a.m. Interment in Fairplains Cemetery. Those wishing to make a donation in Josh’s name may do so to Wounded Warrior Project at woundedwarriorproject.org.

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Man injured in motorcycle crash


A Cedar Springs man suffered life-threatening injuries Tuesday, when his motorcycle collided with a car in Algoma Township.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, the crash occurred about 4:43 p.m. Tuesday, August 11, on Pine Island Drive, at Indian Lakes Road. Their investigation determined that Paige Marie Towery, 24, of Algoma Township, was driving a 2000 black Pontiac Grand Prix north on Pine Island Dr., and signaled to make a left hand turn onto Indian Lakes Road.

Jarrod Lee Welch, 43, of Solon Township, was driving behind Towery, on a black 2002 Honda motorcycle and attempted to pass Towery’s vehicle as she began to make the turn. He struck the rear of her vehicle and was thrown from his motorcycle. He was not wearing a helmet, and suffered life-threatening injuries as a result of the accident. He was transported by Rockford Ambulance to Spectrum Downtown Hospital.

Police said that alcohol may have been a contributing factor in the accident, which remains under investigation.

Algoma Fire and Rescue, Rockford Ambulance, and the Kent County Road Commission all assised at the scene.

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