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Scholar Athlete of the Week - Taylor Wiercinski

(WZZM)- WZZM and Meijer are pleased to recognize Kenowa Hills High School senior Taylor Wiercinski as our Meijer Scholar Athlete of the Week for the week of November 14th.

Taylor is one of the best divers in the state of Michigan. Tuesday she won a regional championship and easily qualified for this weekend's state meet in Ypsilanti. She is undefeated for the season and is a reigning All-State and All-American for the Kenowa Hills-Grandville diving team.

An excellent student with a 3.96 GPA, Taylor says she is undecided about a college choice but plans to become a nurse. "In the summer after fifth grade I had heart surgery. And the anesthesiologist, I really researched his job and I thought it was extremely cool. Then I found out (the cost of) the insurance they need and so, why not settle for the assistant," she says with a laugh.

Taylor is a member of the National Honor Society and has tutored other students in math and Spanish. 

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The Snow Plow Roadeo

 

The City of Kentwood hosted the 2011 Midwest Michigan Snow Plow Roadeo. This year there were 52 participants that made 26 teams of two.

 

A snow plow Roadeo is a test of driving skills through an obstacle course. Points and time are kept during the course and the team with the highest total is declared the winner.

The obstacle course is laid out with cones and barrels to challenge the driver’s ability to operate a plow truck through stations that simulate maneuvering around parked cars, inside and outside curves, diminishing clearance, offset intersections, serpentine areas, and backing into a loading dock.

 

Our Road Commission participants did very well at the competition.

Bad student becomes great teacher

JENISON, Mich. (WZZM)- A pre-kindergarten teacher in the Jenison School District has mastered the art of combining education with entertainment.

Ron Harig's 'out-of-the box style' has elevated him to rock star status with the students and parents as well.

Harig didn't do well himself but has thrived as a teacher by helping children learn in an unusual way.  Thomas Tenbrink, Superintendent of Jenison Public Schools, says test results show Harig's method is working.

WZZM 13's Brent Ashcroft sat down with Ron Harig about his style of teaching. Watch the complete story by pressing play on the attached video.

UPDATE: Lowell man injured in crash

UPDATE AT 3:45 P.M. (WZZM) -- Ottawa County Sheriff's deputies say a Lowell man was ejected from his truck in an accident in Georgetown Township.

Beau Heimer, 20, was in serious condition at Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital on Monday afternoon.

The crash happened around 8 a.m. Monday at 18th Ave. and Port Sheldon St.

Deputies say a minivan driven by Amy VandeGuchte, 42, was northbound on 18th Ave. and did not stop for the stop light.  He vehicle ran into the driver's side of Heimer's westbound pickup.  Heimer's truck rolled and hit a telephone pole, and he was thrown from the vehicle.

Investigators say Heimer was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.  VandeGuchte was wearing her seat belt, and her six-year-old passenger was properly belted into a booster seat, according to deputies.

VandeGuchte suffered minor injuries.  Her passenger was taken to Helen DeVos Children's Hospital, where he is in good condition.

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UPDATE: Crash injures two; causes traffic backups

GRANDVILLE, Mich. (WZZM)- Investigators say a piece of furniture is responsible for a Grandville area crash that injured two people.

It happened around 2 p.m. Saturday  on westbound I-196 near 44th Street. Police say the driver swerved to avoid hiting a piece of furniture in the roadway, veered off the road and into a tree.

Firefighters freed both the driver and passenger from the wreckage.  The driver was airlifted to a nearby hospital, but the extent of injuries is unclear.

The accident closed the freeway for about two hours.

Driver crashes into business, patrol car

HUDSONVILLE, Mich. (WZZM)-A Wyoming man is facing charges for allegedly crashing into a deputy's vehicle while under the influence. 

Around 12:30 a.m. Saturday, deputies were called to 14th and Port Sheldon in Hudsonville on a report of an intoxicated driver. When they arrived, the driver was gone.

About ten minutes later, investigators were called to a hit and run crash involving the same vehicle at the McDonald's on 32nd Avenue. Police spotted the driver on 32nd Avenue and Highland Drive. But when they tried to stop him, detectives say he tried to ram their vehicles multiple times. Investigators say the driver then hit a business before speeding down Highland Drive. The chase ended when he crashed into a patrol car.

Snow, wet roads contributing to accidents

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- Local emergency dispatchers say they are sending police, fire and ambulance crews to numerous accidents caused by snow and wet road conditions.

In one accident around 9:10 p.m. Thursday involved a car and tanker truck in the 8100 block of 36th St. SE in Cascade Township.  Our crew says the truck jack-knifed, blocking 36th Street, and the car was underneath the tanker.

Four people were injured and Aero Med was requested by firefighters, but pilots were not able to fly because of weather conditions.

Another accident was reported on the M-6 Paul Henry Freeway at Wilson Avenue in Byron Township.  Crews were heading to that scene at 9:20 p.m. Thursday.