Holland Christian students and staff remembering teacher killed in crash

Posted at 9:02 AM, Sep 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-28 17:36:07-04

HOLLAND, Mich. - Parents, staff and students are gathering this morning at Holland Christian school, remembering a teacher who died Tuesday evening.

Kevin Witte was injured in a crash Monday morning and was knocked unconscious by a pole that crashed through his vehicle.  He died Tuesday evening.

Parents came out to the school this morning to pray for students and staff as staff breaks the news to students coming to school today.

Kevin Witte and his wife Shari - from the Prayers for Kevin Witte Facebook page

Kevin Witte and his wife Shari - from the Prayers for Kevin Witte Facebook page

Dozens of Witte's former students and their parents along with community members who only had heard of Witte joined hands in prayer Wednesday morning.

“Going into high school I wasn’t that good of a student," said former student Jack Frye. "I had Mr. Witte and he got a place in my heart and we started to become friends. He was just an outgoing teachers and talked to me when something was wrong, he was always there for me.”

Another former student, Jack Clark, said Mr. Witte "really cared about you as a student. I've never had a teacher that's done that."

Witte was 37 and is survived by his wife and three children.  He was also a soccer coach at the school.

Prayers from around the world continue to surround Witte's family and loved ones, many of which can be seen on the Prayers for Kevin Witte Facebook page.

The Holland Christian Schools Superintendent Dan Meester shared his message of support as their community grieves Witte's loss, which is posted on the Holland Christian Schools Facebook page. Meester told FOX 17 the district is taking comfort in upwards of 60 school districts reaching out to them offering support and condolences at this time.

Meanwhile, the investigation continues looking into this deadly accident. Sgt. Steve Austin with the Ottawa County Sheriff's Department says the Parkway Electric truck that hauled the pole that struck Witte exceeded 40 feet (43 feet and 3 inches), which requires a permit and escort as well as a flag during the day and a light at night to clearly mark it.

Austin says investigators found a light at the end of the pole but may issue a ticket. Once the investigation is complete, the Ottawa County prosecutor will review the case.

Parkway Electric released this statement:
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to all involved in Monday's accident. We continue to fully cooperate with authorities investigating the accident."