Forest Hills Central freshman dies after being struck by car

Posted at 11:31 AM, Jan 16, 2015
and last updated 2015-01-16 18:29:49-05

CASCADE TOWNSHIP, Mich. —School officials have confirmed that Lucas Van Sprange, a freshman at Forest Hills Central High School, has died after being struck by a car on Cascade Road near Manchester Hills Drive.

According to Kent County deputies, the 15-year-old was struck by a vehicle at about 7:15 a.m. Friday after being dropped off in the center turn lane by his stepfather.  He got out of the car and was hit by a black Audi driving westbound, that deputies believe was traveling the 55 mile-per-hour speed limit, as he tried to cross the Cascade Road.

Van Sprange was rushed to the hospital in critical condition and later died.

Close friend and Homecoming date of Van Sprange, Tatum Oxford, told FOX 17, "Lucas was a wonderful person. He was way beyond his years, so brilliant. I'm so blessed to have known him."

Van Sprange was a self-proclaimed aspiring physician who had recently traveled to Guatemala and built homes in rural areas.

"Our hearts are broken today, a tragic loss of one of our students, a 15-year-old," said Forest Hills Central Superintendent Dan Behm. "Like all 15-year-olds, he was just so full of life and it's so sudden and so shocking."

Forest Hill Central High School, along with other district schools, will have counselors and social workers available to meet with students. Behm said Van Sprange had attended FHPS since kindergarten.

"He's a kid with a huge smile and someone who had the type of personality that he welcomed many friends, and many friends were drawn to him, because of his outgoing and big personality," Behm said. "We're trying to support our kids, and our thoughts and prayers are certainly with the family."