Friday, April 16, 2010

15-year-old weeps through his sentencing for fatal Spring Lake boating accident

The emotions poured out from four families affected by the Sept. 5 crash between a ski boat and personal watercraft as Ottawa County Family Court Judge Mark Feyen sentenced 15-year-old Jack McKeough to probation, community service and restitution. McKeough, driver of the 27-foot ski boat powered by twin 350-horsepower inboard engines, also must not operate a watercraft during his probation. The crash injured two passengers on the personal watercraft: Alexis Youngberg lost her left leg. Now 17, she uses a prosthetic; 23-year-old Kaitlin VanDam also had a severe injury that left a leg deformed. Feyen described the crash as an "unspeakable tragedy" before he sentenced McKeough to six months of probation, 75 hours of community service and nearly $10,000 in restitution for medical expenses.

Sometimes I read about boating accidents and think: This is the worst ever. This may not be the worst ever but it was plenty bad. What are the lessons that can be learned from this accident? I think some are obvious. What a tragic circumstance. Dwayne

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