IONIA, Mich. - Dispatchers in Ionia County come face-to-face with tragedies every day, but Friday, they were faced with the news that they had lost one of their own.
John Wiechenthal, 39, was killed Thursday afternoon in a crash in Kentwood. A pickup truck crashed into the rear of his car on Kalamazoo Avenue.
Wiechenthal had been an Ionia County dispatcher since 2009.
Wiechenthal was one of the first dispatchers to be recognized by Smart911 with a "SmartSave" for using that system to save a life. He did it on two occasions.
He was also a DJ on B-93.7fm. The station shared their condolences on social media, honoring the life of John "The Canuck" Wiechenthal, which is how he was known on air. He was at the station for 19 years.
Wiechenthal was married and had three children. A GoFundMe page has been set up by his brother to help the family and cover funeral costs.