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Fatal Accident Deemed A Probable Suicide

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

National Park News

On March 31st, the Leelanau County Sheriff’s Department advised the park of a fatality that had occurred in Sleeping Bear Dunes sometime during the early morning hours. A crashed vehicle at the intersection of School Lake Road and County Road 669 was discovered and reported at 4:30 a.m. by a local newspaper delivery truck driver who was passing by. Deputies responded and found that William "Billy" Buchan, 22, of Traverse City, Michigan, had been killed when the car he was driving ran through a stop sign at the T intersection and crashed into an embankment at a high rate of speed.  Buchan, the sole occupant of the vehicle, was pronounced dead at the scene. He was not wearing a seat belt and there were no skid marks on the pavement. Suicide notes were found by the victim's father and girlfriend at their respective residences. The crash remains under investigation but it appears the driver took his own life.



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