Holland Christian deals with fifth death in a year

Three students and two staff members in the district have died in the last year

HOLLAND, Mich. (WOOD) – The Holland Christian Schools community is mourning the death of one of its own for the fifth time in the span of one year.

Holland Christian Schools Superintendent Dan Meester posted to the district’s Facebook page Tuesday, saying Chris Casey, who was the high school technology support specialist, was found dead in his home Tuesday morning.

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office told 24 Hour News 8 that Casey’s death was due to a medical cause. Meester’s note said Casey had a history of seizures, but it’s unclear if that was related to his death.

Casey, according to Meester’s post, was “beloved by faculty and students alike for his friendly, helpful spirit.”

The Holland Sentinel reports that approximately 500 people gathered for a prayer service Wednesday morning at Holland Christian High’s auditorium to remember Casey.

Casey’s passing marked the fifth death for the Holland Christian community in the last year.

In early May, 13-year-old Cassandra Dell died just one day after she was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia.

In March, Caroline Kanis died of a brain tumor at the age of 9.

In September 2016, 37-year-old Kevin Witte, a social studies and Bible teacher – who was also a soccer coach – was killed in a car crash when his SUV was impaled by a pole in Holland Township.

And in June 2016, Holland Christian High School student Riley Hoeksema, 16, died after a boating accident on Lake Michigan.