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  • bullying hurts

    Anonymous bullying and violence hotline “OK2SAY” promoted days after Wyoming teen’s death

    KALAMAZOO, Mich. – It’s been one week since the tragic death of a Wyoming teen who took his life after his family said he was bullied. Now, more students are learning about an anonymous tip line that’s in place across the state to help others speak up about bullying. It’s called OK2SAY, an early warning system that is part of the Michigan Student Safety Initiative. OK2SAY is 24/7 anonymous hotline that officials said is working to stop the silence. According […]

  • Kami

    Lost dog returned to owner after eight months

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – After nearly eight months of surviving freezing cold to hot temperatures, local gas station employees returned a missing dog to its owner. Liz Rumney told FOX 17 she adopted Kami, who she believes to be a three-year-old Shih Tzu mix, from her friend, Kristi Powers, who was fostering the dog. Then, just three weeks later, a friend let Kami outside and she bolted. “It was freezing rain, and it was below zero a couple of nights, […]

  • Brandon Larsen

    “It needs to be talked about every day”: Teen takes his life after loved ones say he was bullied

    WYOMING, Mich. – The community is coming together to remember one of their own and raise awareness about bullying. Brandon Larsen, 14, ninth grader at Wyoming Junior High School, took his life Monday night. Family said he was bullied for months. Thursday classmates and loved ones held signs standing along 28th Street for a car wash, in hopes of raising money to lay Brandon to rest. “He was so wonderful, he really was,” said Melissa Larsen, Brandon’s aunt. “He was […]

  • Hastings teacher cleared of indecent exposure charge

    HASTINGS, Mich. – A Barry County jury cleared a Hastings elementary teacher of his indecent exposure charge, after a neighbor alleged he exposed himself to her while urinating in his backyard. Although a misdemeanor charge, it’s something that could have cost 55-year-old Stephen Merring his teaching license. Merring has taught physical education at Southeastern Elementary School for nearly 20 years. Attorney Fil Iorio said Merring was confident that once the jury heard his client’s side of the story they would […]

  • 140923201826-erin-dnt-cohen-ebola-burial-team-00012414-tablet-large

    Ebola epidemic: Breaking down the threat in West Michigan

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – On Sunday, a healthcare worker with the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, who provided care for the patient who died from Ebola Oct. 8, has tested positive for Ebola. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) called this Ebola epidemic the largest in history. At this point, more than 4,000 people have died; deaths at a rate of one in two people who have come down with the virus. Yet, turning to social media, pictures surfacing […]

  • 63rd District Court room

    4 charged in stabbing, shooting death of Kent County man

    GRAND RAPIDS TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Four of the six men allegedly involved with the Sept. 8 armed robbery and killing of Brent Luttrell, 34, were arraigned Thursday.  Three of them were charged with felonies, including murder. Zachary Bennett, 21, of Lyons, Kevin Berry, 21, of Saranac, Tyler Rohn, 25, of Ionia, and Isaac Fezzey, 21, of Ionia, were charged Thursday. Of the four, Bennett was the only person not charged with murder. However, each faces up to life in prison. […]

  • “Homecoming is bigger than us:” High schoolers raising money for student fighting cancer

    JENISON, Mich. – Homecoming is an exciting time; between making plans, the football game, and finding a date, it brings the community together. This year, Jenison High School (JHS) students told FOX 17 it is much more. “I’m just excited because this year homecoming is bigger than us,” said River Gibbs, senior and student council president. “The money that we raise goes to helping kids and young adults who are fighting life-threatening illnesses.” The student council spearheaded a goal to […]

  • “He will always be in our hearts”: Community remembers Baby Benjamin through bone marrow drive

    BYRON CENTER, Mich. – A community is paying it forward by holding a bone marrow registry drive at Countryside Elementary School after losing a sweet little boy known as “Baby Benjamin.” “It has been a very emotional day, because it just shows how awesome this community is, and how much Mandy and Tim are loved,” said Jolynne Dobson, Countryside Elementary School principal. Baby Benjamin Liao was born Aug. 21, the first child of Mandy and Tim Liao. Just two weeks […]

  • Candidates speak at Ballot Bash with some races tight

    GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Just 29 days from the general election in November, and polls show the races are tight. Monday night FOX 17 heard from four Republican candidates interviewed in the MLive Ballot Bash in downtown Grand Rapids: U.S. Senate Candidate Terri Lynn Land, Governor Rick Snyder, Attorney General Bill Schuette, and Secretary of State Ruth Johnson. Candidates and incumbents discussed major issues like same-sex marriage, immigration reform, and decriminalizing marijuana. Schuette, Snyder, and Land were mostly in agreement: […]