Estes Park

Falling rock kills local girl

June 30, 2010 // 0 Comments

A 17-year-old Cedar Springs High School student died Wednesday, June 16, when she was hit by a falling rock in Colorado. According to Kate Rusch, spokesperson for Estes Park, Colorado, Audra Brownell, the daughter of Scott and Diane Brownell, of Algoma Township was struck about 4 p.m. in an open space off the Estes Park’s Town Hall parking lot called Knolls Willow. It was reportedly a town “green space” in a grassy area with a creek running through it. A cliff rises above the area. Rusch said that emergency responders were on the scene immediately, and the young woman was pronounced dead from her injuries. The Estes Park Police Department is conducting a death investigation and interviewing numerous witnesses to the incident. The area was closed to the public until the investigation is complete. “The community is devastated by this tragic incident and our thoughts are with the family and friends of the victim,” said Estes Park Mayor Bill Pinkham. “Our police department is working around the clock to sort out the details of the incident.” The accident occurred while Audra was on a backpacking adventure with the senior high youth group at Rockford Reformed Church. “She was a wonderful Christian young lady,” said Lead pastor Rick Tigchon, “a really sweet person.” He noted that she and her family are very involved in ministry at the church, and that Audra was especially involved in kids ministry. “A lot of people are grieving, it’s been very traumatic,” said Tigchon. “But we feel God will help us through it.” Audra had just finished her junior year at Cedar Springs High School. “She was a fabulous young lady,” remarked principal Ron Behrenwald. “She was a little reserved, but not so much that it affected her socially or academically.” He said that she was in the top 10 of her class, and very academically-oriented. She was just inducted into the National Honor Society last fall, and showed interest in going to Michigan State to study in the health/sciences field. But Audra was more than academically oriented. “She was also very accomplished in band and was going to be section leader for the flutes next fall,” noted Behrenwald. He said that during a grief session held for the students Thursday, […]