Husband mourns wife following deadly industrial accident in Ionia

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Wanda Holbrook (Courtesy Photo)

GRAND RAPIDS – “The only person who wasn’t surprised yesterday was God,” said Bill Holbrook.

Holbrook, mourning the loss of his wife Wanda Holbrook, 57, who police identified as the victim involved in Tuesday’s deadly industrial accident at Ventra Main in Ionia.

Police saying in a press release Wednesday she was employed by the company 12 years and worked in the maintenance department.

“People ask me how I go her and I tell them, I caught her on an off day and took advantage,” said Holbrook.

Holbrook, while being comforted by his older sister outside his Grand Rapids home Wednesday, telling FOX17 his family isn’t bitter towards the company, focusing instead on celebrating Wanda’s life.

Holbrook, also releasing this statement on Facebook today:

My dear friends and family, yesterday my wife Wanda Holbrook was killed in an industrial accident. I’m sorry that this is the way to let you know but I wanted to be sure everyone knew. She was an amazing woman of God and made me a better man than I ever thought was possible. I want this to be a celebration of her life, of Christ shining through her and of what she meant in our lives. Please pray for us and feel free to call, text or stop by. I love each and everyone of you and count you as blessings in my life. I will share arrangement details when available.

Memorial services for Wanda Holbrook are scheduled for Sunday from 2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. at Stroo Funeral Home at 1095 68th Street SE.

Investigators say Wanda Holbrook was found trapped by robotic machinery at approximately 2:20 p.m. Tuesday.  She was later pronounced dead at the scene.

Ventra Main in Ionia

Ventra Main in Ionia

The Ionia Public Safety Department is still investigating the incident, along with the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA).

Records obtained through the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) revealed a serious violation of the Guards for Power Transmission rules found during a 2012 inspection at Ventra Main in Ionia.

Records show a $4,500 penalty was administered, later settled with the employer paying a reduced penalty of $2,250 while providing abatement documentation showing the hazard had been corrected.



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  • Samantha

    My heart and prayers truly goes out to this family:( It’s very sad and how she was young:( I pray if this was a violation on the factories part, that OSHA actually takes dramastic action over this because this is not the first time this has happened regardless of the name change. To me, if it was their fault, this is negligent on their part and hopefully this family can have at least some closure. I know that it won’t bring back your loved one, but at least if this is handled, it can’t ever happen again to someone else’s loved one. Prayers to you all!

  • Lor

    Condolences to Bill and the rest of Wandas friends and family, I knew her and she was the sweetest lady. She will be greatly missed.

  • nicole

    My most sincere condolences go out to her family and friends. Be sure to let your loved ones know how much you care, you never know which day will be their last.

  • xcxc

    until I saw the receipt for $6988 , I accept …that…my friends brother was realey erning money parttime from their computer. . there sisters neighbour has done this 4 less than 8 months and just paid for the depts on there home and bourt a great Land Rover Range Rover . go to this website .Get More Detail Here

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