A Sparta man who died following a tragic ORV accident early Christmas eve morning has given the gift of life to others.
According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, Derek Bellows, 23, of Sparta, was driving a 2000 Yamaha quad westbound on 14 Mile Road NW, west of Phelps Avenue NW, in Sparta Township, when he hit a tree that had fallen across the road. He was thrown from the quad and found lying in the roadway. He was not wearing a helmet, and suffered a severe head injury.
Police believe the accident occurred between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. He was discovered about 6:25 a.m. It was unknown whether alcohol or excessive speed was involved.
Derek was transported to the hospital, where he was put on a ventilator. He died on December 26.
According to a gofundme page set up in his memory, Derek’s organs were donated to save the lives of several people. It was reportedly close to Derek’s heart, because his grandfather received a new heart eight years ago.
According to the gofundme page, “Derek was an amazing young man and full of life. He loved the outdoors, riding horses, snowmobiles, four-wheelers or whatever he could drive fast. He also had a huge heart for people and animals. Derek loved horses and especially his dog.”
His funeral will be January 2, at 1 p.m. at Ballard Church of Christ. To make a memorial contribution, visit the gofundme page at https://www.gofundme.com/9ygj28qk. Contributions will benefit the Wounded Warrior project.