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Local News

Victim who died in Ionia County traffic crash identified

UPDATE: The Ionia County Sheriff’s Office has positively identified the victim in the fatal accident as Shardella Shana White-Smith of Kentwood. The crash remains under investigation. 

 

ORIGINAL STORY:Ionia County Sheriff’s deputies and Lowell and Saranac fire departments responded to a three-car accident on M-21 near Whites Bridge Road in Boston Township Wednesday morning at 10:14 a.m.

Ionia County Central Dispatch advised deputies that three vehicles were involved and that two of them had hit head on.

 

Deputies arrived six minutes later to find one of the vehicles fully involved in flames and the second vehicle entwined with that vehicle, also burning.  Both vehicles were occupied.

 

With the help of a civilian volunteer firefighter, the deputy was able to combat the flames and extract the driver of the second vehicle, identified as Christopher Shawn McKibben, 42, from Saranac. He was transported by Life EMS to Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids where he remains in serious condition but is expected to live.    

 

Deputies preliminary investigation showed that McKibben was eastbound on M-21 in a Ford Explorer toward Saranac and crossed the centerline into the westbound lane of travel.

The other two vehicles were both traveling westbound and were unable to avoid the impending collision due to a guardrail and bridge located on the roadway.

 

McKibben’s vehicle sideswiped the first vehicle, a Kia driven by 38-year-old Anna Burr, before striking the Buick Rendezvous head-on causing the fatal injury to the driver. 

 

No information is being released about the victim at this time. 

Ionia County Central Dispatch, Lowell and Saranac fire departments, Life EMS, Lehman’s Funeral Home, Reed and Hoppes Towing, Ionia County Road Commission and numerous civilians assisted deputies. The crash remains under investigation.

            

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