Edwardsburg teen killed in accident

Published 9:35 am Thursday, May 5, 2016

Edwardsburg students are mourning the loss of Makayla McKenzie, 16, who died from injuries sustained in a fatal traffic crash at the intersection of Pine Lake Street and Dailey Road in Jefferson Township Tuesday morning.

Makayla McKenzie

Makayla McKenzie

Cass County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the crash at 11:40 a.m.

According to a prepared statement from the Cass County Sheriff’s Office, witnesses told authorities that a pickup truck driven by Jeffrey Jackson, 25, of Niles, disregarded the stop sign on Pine Lake Street.

Jackson, who was eastbound, struck the northbound vehicle driven by McKenzie. The vehicle left the roadway, overturned and came to rest on its top, according to the release.

Medflight was dispatched to the scene, but McKenzie was pronounced dead before she could be transported to the hospital.

Her passengers, Camryn Raab, 16, and Hannah Philot, 17, both also of Edwardsburg, were transported to South Bend Memorial Hospital.

All three were en route to Southwestern Michigan College as part of its dual enrollment.

Raab was treated and released, while Philot remains hospitalized. Her condition is unknown.

Jackson was also transported to South Bend Memorial. He is listed in good condition.

The crash remains under investigation.

A Go Fund Me account has been set up to help pay for the funeral of McKenzie. Anyone wishing to donate can

Edwardsburg Superintendent Sherman Ostrander said that the outpouring of emotion from the student body Wednesday morning has been overwhelming.

Ostrander also said that the support that Southwestern Michigan College, the Cass County Intermediate School District and neighboring districts have offered is much appreciated.

“It is a tragic loss for our district,” Ostrander said. “All three are outstanding young ladies. They are highly regarded by their peers, staff and administration. It is a difficult time for everyone.

“We have got a pretty connected student body. Everybody knows everybody and they support each other in time of need. That was pretty evident this morning when I was at the high school.”

Ostrander said that the district is blessed to have several social workers and counselors who had been providing support as needed.

“We also have a wonderful staff who support our students in time of tragedy,” Ostrander said. “We have been offered additional assistance by Southwestern, the local ISD and other districts and it is much appreciated. The outpouring of support form those entities has been overwhelming.”

do so at www.gofundme.com/22w2gepg.