Driver ejected in 144th Avenue crash

Becky Vargo • Nov 7, 2016 at 11:49 AM

Emergency personnel closed 144th Avenue near one of the entrances to the River Haven community after a two-car crash that occurred at about 11:30 a.m. Monday.

According to officials, a 2007 Chevrolet Equinox exiting the River Haven community on Wintergreen Street ran a stop sign, and pulled into the path of a 2001 Volkswagen Passat that was traveling south on 144th Avenue.

Peggy Brandon, 55, was driving at speeds not appropriate for the mobile home park, said Sgt. Bob Ruster of the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department.

Witnesses said the Grand Haven woman drove through the stop sign and was struck on the driver’s side of the car by the southbound vehicle.


"That car there was barreling through our park,” River Haven resident Ryan Vanklompenberg said as he pointed at Brandon’s red Equinox. “And it didn’t stop at the stop sign.”

Vanklompenberg said he was out by his garbage can when the car went by. He yelled at his wife to call 911 and ran out to the collision. People were already stopping to help, he said. 


Brandon was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from her vehicle in the collision, Ruster said. She landed on the southeast side of the road. She suffered multiple injuries including closed head injuries, Ruster said.

Brandon was transported by North Ottawa Community Hospital ambulance to the Odawa/Battle Point Boat Launch at the intersection of Mercury Drive and 144th Avenue. She was then taken via the Aero Med helicopter to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids.

Ruster said that Brandon’s injuries were critical.

The other driver, 32-year-old Padriac O’Connor of Holland, was checked by paramedics at the scene. He was not injured, Ruster said.  

The crash remains under investigation, Ruster said.

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