Jury awards $4.6M in 2009 SL boating crash

A federal jury has awarded a Chicago woman more than $4 million for injuries she suffered in a boating accident on Spring Lake nearly four years ago.
Becky Vargo
Jun 22, 2012


The eight-member jury was unanimous in its decision handed down in U.S. District Court in Grand Rapids shortly before 3 p.m. today.

Attorneys say today's decision is the final lawsuit over a boating crash that took the life of a Spring Lake High School student and severely injured two other people on Labor Day weekend 2009.

Jurors awarded Alexis Youngberg $4.6 million in damages after finding Jack McKeough negligent. Jurors said Jack's father, Michael McKeough, was also liable in the case because he owned the boat his then-14-year-old son was driving that crashed into a personal watercraft that Youngberg was riding.

The driver of the personal watercraft, Robby Jerovsek, was killed in the crash.

"There are no winners," Sue Jerovsek, Robby's mother, said after the jury's decision today.

Another passenger on the personal watercraft, Kaitlin VanDam, was also injured in the crash. Youngberg lost her leg.



wow.. the family who lost their son... got a WHOLE lot less than this. Wow....


She will get nothing they filed for bankruptcy.


@playfair...You must know the defendant's family to know their personal financial matters. Whether you do or not, its too bad you had to air their personal business on here for everyone to see. Now who's NOT playing fair???


I believe this statement from the Grand Haven Tribune is another interesting comment on this case:

As written by:
When reading this report on the Youngberg/McKeough trial please make sure to inform yourself of ALL the facts. The jury felt justice was served in awarding Youngberg her settlement of $4.6 Million for her current and future medical expenses. Unfortunately, it is highly unlikely that Youngberg willl ever see a cent of this money. Due to the undisputed fact that Mr. Michael Mckeough has declared personal bankruptcy. As the driver, according to Michigan Law, Jerovsek needed to be found ONLY 1% responsible for Youngberg's OWN personal liabilty insurance policy to take effect and cover her medical expenses. The jury was never informed of the 1% and the law mandating this fact. Why? .. Complicity? ... Powerful Insurance Companies ....
Just being an operator you have a 1% responsibility. This 1% law was made to help injured parties in a boating accident get covered by insurance because of the difficulty on the water determining fault. Before the trial, both families, their friends and sheriff repeatedly said both operators made mistakes. In addition, the McKeogh family did not have inexpensive umbrella liability insurance to cover any major injuries incurred...really... on a $100,000 boat? The gas for a couple days would have paid for the insurance. Why would these families want to keep a handicapped girl from her OWN insurance to cover her current and future medical expenses? They had the power to do the right thing and did not.


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