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Hope College student hit, killed by train Monday

Tribune Staff • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:11 AM

Capt. Bob Buursma of the Holland Department of Public Safety said Boerigter was pronounced dead at the scene by the Ottawa County medical examiner.

The 130-car coal train blocked traffic between 10th and 32nd streets for several hours Monday night while authorities investigated the incident. The crash remains under investigation, Buursma said.

Hope College officials said Boerigter was a freshman at the college and a 2011 graduate of Portage Northern High School. He was known as “J.P.” by his friends and professors, Hope College spokesman Tom Renner said. Both of his parents, James and Letitia Boerigter, graduated from Hope.

The campus community held a special prayer and reflection service at Dimnent Memorial Chapel late this morning, Renner said.

Anyone who may have witnessed the incident or have additional information is requested to contact the Holland Department of Public Safety at 616-355-1100.

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