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Truck driver arraigned for July 4 crash that killed West Olive woman

The Holland Sentinel • Sep 12, 2018 at 7:51 PM

HOLLAND — A Hamilton woman was arraigned Tuesday for charges related to the death of a West Olive woman in a U.S. 31 crash.

Rhonda Vandermyde, 56, was charged last month with a moving violation causing death. It is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in prison and/or up to $2,000 in fines. 

Vandermyde pleaded guilty to the charge at Tuesday’s arraignment in Ottawa County District Court,

The crash that killed 60-year-old Ruth Bull happened July 4 in West Olive. Police said Vandermyde was driving a Freightliner semi-truck south on U.S. 31 and did not recognize that she had a red light at the intersection with Port Sheldon Street. Police said she did not stop or slow down as she approached the intersection, and her semi then struck the back of Bull’s Jeep.

Bull was pronounced dead at the scene.

Another driver, Emily Montelongo, was injured in the crash when her Windstar van was struck by the semi.

Bull was a Spring Lake High School graduate and was employed at Shape Corp. Bull is survived by two daughters, a son and five grandchildren.

The Ottawa County Prosecutor’s Office did not return requests for comment from The Sentinel about why the charge was a misdemeanor, rather than a felony, for causing a fatal crash.

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