Sheriff praises firefighters for help in last week’s fatal crash

February 13, 2014
Sheriff Kim Cole

Sheriff Kim Cole

HAMLIN TWP. — Mason County Sheriff Kim Cole praised the work of firefighters during last week’s crash that resulted in the death Amanda Collins and her infant daughter, and has left the other daughter in critical condition.

“I just wanted to thank the firefighters, Chief Vandervest and the guys,” Sheriff Cole said at the Hamlin Township Board of Trustees meeting Thursday night. “It’s never easy when you have a fatal car wreck, but when you have a mother and her little baby die, that’s just awfully hard.”

Hamlin Township, Ludington and Pere Marquette fire departments all responded to the crash.

Cole said he was especially proud that when he arrived on the scene, there were three firefighters with the deceased 10-month-old, Lillian Grace Collins.

“When I worked road patrol, I came across a crash where a friend’s son had died,” Cole said. “His one fear was that his son had laid there alone. So, in the early 2000’s I approached the area firefighters and asked that they assure that a deceased body is never left alone.”

Cole said the day after last week’s crash, one of the grandmothers came to see him. “She was tearful when I told her that at no time were the victims left alone.”

Cole said that 7-year-old Madysen Church, daughter of Collins, was in critical condition at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids. He said he has been in contact with the family.

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