Father, son die in single-car crash

Associated Press • Feb 18, 2019 at 10:00 AM

BARRY COUNTY – Michigan State police are investigating a single-vehicle crash that killed a father and his 12-year-old son.

The crash reportedly occurred just before 7 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 16, on Charlton Park Road south of Center Road in Barry County’s Hastings Township.

The roadway was closed following the crash, according to a notice published on social media Saturday by the Barry County Central Dispatch.

Both the driver, a 55-year-old man, and his 12-year-old son were pronounced dead at the scene, WWMT reports. Troopers told the TV station that the driver lost control of his vehicle and left the roadway.

Drugs and alcohol do not appear to be factors in the crash.


Man fell asleep at wheel before crash with tree, police say

CASS COUNTY – A 25-year-old Dowagiac man fell asleep at the wheel before he crashed his vehicle into a tree, according to the Cass County Sheriff’s Office.

The man was hospitalized following the crash and his current condition is unknown, according to a news release issued by the sheriff’s office.

Alcohol and drugs were not factors in the crash, but the investigation is ongoing.

Deputies responded at around 7:15 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 16, to Marcellus Highway east of Goodenough Road in Cass County’s Volinia Township.

Investigators wrote that the man fell asleep while driving, left the roadway and struck a tree, the release reads. He was injured in the crash and taken to a local hospital by ambulance.

The Wayne Township Fire Department and PrideCare Ambulance assisted deputies at the scene.


Michigan man found dead after rollover crash

CALHOUN COUNTY – A West Michigan man was found dead Saturday morning after his vehicle left the roadway and rolled over in a drainage ditch, according to the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office.

The victim was identified only as a 65-year-old man from Marshall, according to a news release issued by the sheriff’s office.

Deputies said they believe the crash may have occurred on the evening of Friday, Feb. 15, and the investigation is ongoing.

Deputies responded at around 9:30 a.m., Saturday, Feb. 16, to the 16000 block of Division Drive in Calhoun County’s Marshall Township on a report of a single-vehicle crash.

Investigators said the man was traveling in a blue 1999 Jeep Cherokee on westbound Division Drive when it crossed the center line and left the roadway, the release reads.

The vehicle then struck a drainage ditch culvert, causing the vehicle to roll over twice before landing on its top side.

The man was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the release. He was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.


Man killed in snowmobiling accident in western Michigan

REYNOLDS TOWNSHIP — State police say a man riding a snowmobile died after he lost control of the vehicle and was thrown against a tree in western Michigan.

Michigan State Police's Lakeview post says Archie Demartin was pronounced dead early Sunday at the scene of the accident in Montcalm County's Reynolds Township.

Police did not release his age or hometown.

Authorities say Demartin was riding a snowmobile late Saturday when he lost control of the vehicle. The snowmobile overturned and ejected Demartin, who wasn't wearing a helmet, into a tree.

The accident occurred near the intersection Mackinaw Trail Drive and Saginaw Trail.


Yankee Air Museum searching for WWII ‘Michigan Stadium’ bomber airmen

BELLEVILLE, MI - An old photograph of a World War II bomber with Michigan Stadium painted on its nose was discovered by Yankee Air Museum Chairman Ray Hunter almost 30 years ago.

The museum identified the aircraft as a B-24 Liberator Bomber that flew in the Pacific Theater from 1942-46. Now, it wants to find WWII veterans from the aircraft’s crew or their surviving family members who might have stories about the “Michigan” or the plane’s connection to the Big House.

“We’ve looked several times and haven’t heard anything since,” Hunter said. “It may be a fruitless search, but as we approach the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II next year, it’s time to renew that search."

The museum hopes to not only learn more about the plane, but to honor local heroes and obtain first person stories or perhaps additional photos of this B-24, according to Dave Callanan, director of outreach services.

“Why Michigan? Why did that stand out? Was one of the crewmen a UM alum or from Ann Arbor? We don’t know the story,” Callanan said.

This search exemplifies the purpose of the Yankee Air Museum: To bring history alive and connect with the community, Callanan said. He said he also hopes this search will relieve veterans of stories they’ve kept bottled up since the war.

“For years, these gallant men keep everything in, didn’t tell people what it was like during the war," he said. “When WWII vets visit our planes, tears run and they start telling stories.”

The plane’s artist has been identified as Staff Sgt. Sarkis Bartigian, a commercial artist who painted several WWII aircraft.

A plane’s nose art during WWII typically reflected reminders of the home front or names of girlfriends, wives or hometowns, Hunter said. Few rules existed for what artists could paint on planes due to heavy losses of aircraft during bombing missions, he said.

Anyone with information or leads on the B-24 Liberator “Michigan” is asked to contact Hunter at ray.hunter@yankeeairmuseum.org.

“We’ve lost a couple of very important members who were WWII vets," Callanan said. “So we can’t wait. We have to keep looking. It’s too good of a story.”

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