HOWARD CITY, Mich. — A community is coming together to help a family who lost two of its members in a crash over the weekend.
The Baker family was driving home from church Sunday afternoon when they were rear-ended on the corner of M-46 and Amble Road. The collision sent their vehicle into the other lane and caused a crash.
Three of the four people in the vehicle were rushed to the hospital, and 9-month-old Annalee Baker was pronounced dead at the scene. On Monday, 18-year-old Samantha Baker died at an area hospital.
In just one day, the community has raised more than $10,000 through GoFundMe to help the Bakers in their time of need. But their pastor and extended family say all they need now is kind words and time to heal.
“Who can understand what happened? Who has really gone through a situation like that? Not too many, so you can’t fully identify,” said Pastor Joel Cooper. “You can only imagine, but you can be willing to share and shoulder that grief that they have.
“People can pray if they want to pray for the family, and I think another thing they’d probably enjoy receiving is just short little cards of encouragement. Mail them in to us and can we get to them.”
Grace Community Church is located at 9920 Reed Rd. in Howard City.
Investigators say the drivers in the other two cars were hospitalized with minor injuries, but it is too early to tell if alcohol, speed or distracted driving were factors.