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Tag Archive | "solon township"

Sparta couple killed in Solon crash


Two people were killed Sunday when a pickup truck ran a stop sign at 20 Mile and Algoma and struck their vehicle. Photo courtesy of Tammy Crum.

An elderly Sparta couple died Sunday after the car they were traveling in was struck by a pickup truck that ran a stop sign.

According to the Kent County Sheriff’s Office, the crash occurred Sunday, August 29, about 7:40 p.m. at the intersection of Algoma Ave NE and 20 Mile Rd NE in Solon Township.

According to police, a Ford F350 was traveling westbound on 20 Mile Rd when the driver ran the stop sign and struck a Buick Envision that was northbound on Algoma.

The driver of the Buick Envision, Jack Behrens, 73, from Sparta, and the passenger, Patricia Behrens, 74, from Sparta, died as a result of the crash. The driver of the Ford F350 was transported to Spectrum Butterworth with non-life-threatening injuries.

Police believe alcohol was a factor in the crash. It is still under investigation.

Solon Fire Department, Cedar Springs Fire Department, and Rockford Ambulance assisted at the scene.

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Man injured in explosion, house fire


by Judy Reed

: A man was seriously injured after an explosion and fire at this home in White Creek Country Estates Tuesday, May 4. Photo by Michael L. Streeter.

The Kent County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a fire involving injuries at White Creek Country Estates in Solon Township Tuesday.

Multiple fire departments help battle the blaze in Solon Township Tuesday. Photo by B. Sanderson.

Multiple fire departments and deputies from the Kent County Sheriff’s Office responded about 5:14 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, to 15290 Pecan Avenue, in White Creek Country Estates (White Creek Ave NE and Egner St NE) on a residential fire, preceded by several explosions.

A 50-year-old man, who was outside of the residence, was severely injured after a fire and multiple explosions occurred in an attached carport. According to the Kent County Sheriff’s Office, neighbors pulled the victim out of the carport.

According to Sgt. Joy Matthews, when officers arrived on the scene, they saw butane tanks inside the carport and smoke and flames coming from the house. They immediately evacuated several nearby residences and provided emergency medical aid to the victim who sustained significant injuries to his hands and burns to his body. He was transported to Spectrum Hospital and is currently undergoing treatment. The victim’s mother was inside the residence at the time of the fire but was not injured. Both the victim and his mother live at the residence.

Both fire and smoke damage destroyed this home on Pecan Avenue in Solon Township’s White Creek Country Estates. Photo by B. Sanderson.

Michigan State Police Bomb Squad and Arson Investigators responded to the scene after homemade fireworks were located.

Solon Fire Department, Algoma Fire Department, Cedar Springs Fire Department, Kent City Fire Department, and Sand Lake Fire Department all assisted with the fire.

According to Solon firefighter Matt Schievink, the carport and a shed were completely destroyed and, while the home was left standing, the back corner was gone and considered a complete loss. Two other homes nearby were also damaged by shrapnel from the explosions.

Schievink said that one of the things that made the fire difficult to fight was that the explosion ruptured a natural gas line and they had to wait for both DTE Energy to arrive to turn off the gas, and Consumers Energy to turn off the power. That meant they could not go inside the residence and could only battle it from outside. He said it took a good hour to put the fire out. They finally cleared at 9:51 p.m.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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Firefighters battle Solon blaze


A Solon Township home caught fire Tuesday evening. Photos from Solon Township Fire facebook page.

By Judy Reed

Several fire departments battled a fire in Solon Township Tuesday evening. It was located at 16685 Antler Drive, which is north of 20 Mile Rd, west of Algoma.

When the call came across dispatch shortly before 7 p.m., the fire was through the roof in the garage. It later spread to the house itself.

According to the Solon Township Fire facebook page, the family made it out of the house safely, and firefighters rescued two cats from the home.

Both Cedar Springs Fire and Algoma Fire Departments helped Solon put out the fire.

Complete details about the fire were not available at press time Wednesday.

That’s at least the third fire in a week for the Solon Township Fire Department.

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Clarification on ballots in Solon Township


Last week we reported in our election results story that a voting machine in Solon Township was down for about an hour on election day until a technician arrived and fixed it. We reported that clerk Dorothy Willoughby told us that in the meantime, the ballots that voters filled out were put in an auxiliary bin and fed through later, like the absentee ballots.

Willoughby later clarified that the ballots were not fed into the absentee ballot machines; they were fed into the same machine that election day voters used. She also said that both a Republican inspector and Democrat inspector are both present when the votes are fed through.

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Woman killed in head-on crash; several others injured


A 50-year-old woman from White Cloud died Sunday evening, when the car she was riding in was hit head-on by another vehicle just west of Cedar Springs.

According to the Michigan State Police, the crash occurred about 10 p.m. on Sunday, August 16, on 17 Mile Road near Lime Lake Avenue in Solon Township.

Their preliminary investigation revealed that a 2006 Chevy Avalanche driven by a 35-year-old man from Sparta was traveling west bound on 17 Mile Road when he crossed the center line and collided head on with a 2002 Chevy Impala that was traveling east bound and driven by a 28-year-old woman from White Cloud, MI.  A 50-year-old woman from White Cloud was inside the Chevrolet Impala and was pronounced deceased on scene.

The driver and a second juvenile passenger in the Chevrolet Impala, and the driver of the Chevrolet Avalanche, were all transported to the hospital via Aero Med and are in critical condition. Two juvenile passengers of the Chevrolet Avalanche were transported to the hospital via ambulance for non-life-threatening injuries. 

The crash remains under investigation by the MSP Rockford post. Names have not yet been released. Alcohol is believed to be a factor in the crash.  

Troopers were assisted on scene by the Kent County Sheriff’s Office, Kent City Fire Department, Solon Township Fire Department, Rockford EMS Ambulance, Montcalm County EMS Ambulance, Spectrum Health Aero Med, and Michigan Department of Transportation. 

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Solon fire frees man pinned in vehicle



A man was freed from this vehicle and treated for minor injuries after he hit a tree in Solon Township. Photo from Solon Fire Facebook page.

The crash occurred on 18 Mile Rd near Algoma. Photo from Solon Fire Facebook page.

Police suspect that alcohol was involved in a crash that occurred in Solon Township last weekend.

According to the Kent County Sheriff’s Office, it happened about 10:55 p.m. on Friday, January 24, on 18 Mile Rd near Algoma Ave NE. A 39-year-old man from Cedar Springs was traveling westbound on Algoma when the vehicle he was driving went off the roadway and struck a tree.

The man was pinned inside his car, and Solon Fire, with mutual aid from Cedar Springs Fire, extricated the man from the vehicle. He was then transported to Spectrum Hospital for treatment for some minor injuries. 

Police are waiting on lab tests before sending this to the prosecutor’s office for review.

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Firefighters presented with life saving award



From L to R: Andrew Bobo, Matt Schievink, and Taylor Hunt received a special life saving award Tuesday evening at the Solon Township Board meeting. Missing from the photo is Solon Firefighter Rich Hays, who also is an award recipient. Courtesy photo.

On September 10, 2019 at the Solon Township Board Meeting, four members of Solon FD were presented a Life Saving Award by the Kent County Emergency Medical Services, Medical Control Authority Systems Administrator, Mr. Lance Corey.

This award was given for their efforts with “Exceptional Patient Care” of a critically injured patient on August 16, 2018 suffered during a motor vehicle crash on Algoma Avenue near Quarter Horse Drive in Solon Township. The patient, Lila DeLine, had slowed or stopped to turn into a driveway and was hit from behind by another driver. The force of the impact caused her to suffer a life-threatening spinal cord injury—she was internally decapitated, an injury that usually proves fatal. She spent just over a week at Spectrum Health, and then transferred to Mary Free Bed for Rehabilitation. 

The members of the Solon Fire Department receiving the award included Matt Schievink, Taylor Hunt, Andrew Bobo, and Rich Hays. 

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Fire burns mobile home


A firefighter works to put out the fire in this mobile home Monday. Post photo by J. Reed.

by Judy Reed

An early afternoon fire destroyed the back end of a mobile home and took the lives of two pets living there Monday.

According to Solon Township’s Deputy Fire Chief Chris Paige, they were dispatched to the fire on Hemlock Avenue in White Creek Country Estates at 1:36 p.m. Monday, July 22. Surrounding fire departments that supplied mutual aid included Algoma, Cedar Springs, and Sand Lake. Rockford Ambulance was there on standby.

Four fire departments responded to the blaze at White Creek Country Estates Monday afternoon. Post photo by J. Reed.

Paige said that when they arrived, they found heavy fire coming from the rear of the residence. There was no one home at the time. Neighbors told the Post that the woman who owned the home was at work. Her two cats unfortunately did not make it out of the home.

Paige said it appeared that the fire started in the rear of the mobile home, but the cause is still under investigation.

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Thieves chop hair from horses’ tails


By Judy Reed

When Solon Township resident Emily Scott went to check on her horses on Tuesday morning about 9:45 a.m., she couldn’t believe what she saw—someone had chopped hunks out of two of her three horses’ tails.

“I saw them and thought what in the world happened to you guys?” she said.

Someone chopped the hair from the tails of these Solon Township horses. Courtesy photo.

“They just took big handfuls and chopped it off. The gelding has almost no hair left.”

She’s glad that whoever did it didn’t touch their third horse, a baby Tennessee Walker. “Her hair wasn’t long enough,” explained Scott.

She said with the wind and blowing snow, no tracks were visible, and they found no trace of the horsehair on the ground.  

“My horses are so nice. We raised them like dogs,” said Scott. “They are so loving, and love to be petted and wouldn’t have fought back.” 

Scott had a lot of things running through her mind. She wondered if she had made someone mad. And did they do anything else to harm the horses? But that was not the case.

Instead, she found out through some online articles that there is a market for horsehair, and found some stories similar to her own. Horsehair is used in crafts, hair extensions for horses, strings for musical instruments, and more.

While the horses weren’t physically injured, they will miss their tails. “It’s cruel,” she said. “The hair will take a long time to grow back and they need their tails to swat flies during the summer.” They had also been planning to start showing the horses this year.

Emily and her husband Chris called the Kent County Sheriff’s Office to their home on Albrecht, and a deputy took the report, but there aren’t currently any leads. If anyone has any information about this incident, please call Silent Observer at 616-774-2345.

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Police find second crime scene in shooting


by Judy Reed

The Kent County Sheriff’s Office continued Tuesday to search for a second crime scene related to the shooting Monday in Solon Township and found it late Tuesday afternoon.

The Sheriff’s Office had asked for the public’s help regarding whether they had seen a particular Buick the day of the shooting, and tips came pouring in.

“We can confirm that the second crime scene has been located in the 300 block of 19 Mile Rd NE on a wooded piece of property not far from where the victims were located,” said Sgt. Joel Roon, in a press release to media.

“Investigators are processing the scene now. We thank the residents who called in with tips on the Buick Century, and no further assistance is needed regarding sightings of the vehicle.”

Police were called to the 200 block of 19 Mile Rd shortly after 3 p.m. on Monday, February 18 on a shooting with possibly four victims. When police arrived, they found a mother and her three children—all elementary age and younger—dead. A preliminary search led officers to believe that there is a second crime scene where the shootings may have taken place.

Autopsies are being conducted tomorrow. Police said the official identification of the victims would be provided after the autopsies are complete.  

Tri County Area Schools Superintendent Allen Cumings sent out a letter to the parents and communities saying that two of the sisters killed—Cassidy and Kyrie Rodery—were Tri County students. Cassidy was a first grader at MacNaughton Elementary, and Kyrie was a third grader at Sand Lake Elementary.

Cassidy’s teacher, Mrs. Kelley, said that she was a friend to everyone, a hard worker, and was always on task. Kyrie was a sweet girl who enjoyed playing and being active. Her teacher, Mrs. Schnepp, said that Kyrie  “loved to read, always volunteered to help others, her classmates loved her, and that she was a good friend.”

Tri County’s crisis team members were available at the two schools this morning to help students, staff and parents. The letter said they would be available to middle and high school students as well.

“We hurt and mourn with the loss of these precious students,” wrote Cumings. “Please keep the family and friends in your thoughts and prayers during this time.”

Cedar Springs Public Schools Superintendent Scott Smith told the Post today that while the tragic events that touched the Cedar Springs community yesterday did not directly involve any of their students, their crisis team was ready to support students and staff who may have been connected in some way to the tragedy.

Related story: http://cedarspringspost.com/2019/02/18/four-dead-in-solon-township-shooting/

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