A snowmobile accident on the weekend has claimed the life of a young woman from Lakeshore, Ont., said Chatham-Kent Police.
Megan Sylvestre, 19, was participating in a poker run with her boyfriend, also 19, in the Wallaceburg area on Saturday afternoon. Police said the two had left the legion hall in Dresden when their snowmobile collided with a fallen tree in the area of Kings Ferry Road and Glasgow Line on the Sydenham River on Saturday afternoon.
The tree had fallen from the riverbank and was partially suspended over the river, and snowmobile tracks showed no change in direction leading up to the point of impact, police said.
Sylvestre was taken to hospital in Wallaceburg where she was pronounced dead. Sylvestre's boyfriend was treated at hospital for his injuries.
Police say they were both wearing their helmets, and alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the crash.
Police are urging anyone who was driving nearby at the time of the collision to contact Const. Scott Renders at 519-355-1092.
Sylvestre family devastated
The family has been devastated by Sylvestre's death.
"She was an amazing, beautiful girl," said Michelle Gagnon, Sylvestre's aunt. "This an unbelievable, horrible loss."
Gagnon said Sylvestre had a bright future ahead of her as a French teacher.
"She would have been a great teacher," Gagnon told CBC News on Monday.
A l'Essor high school graduate, Sylvestre was studying early childhood education at St. Clair College and was planning to attend the University of Windsor in the fall. Sylvestre was also active as a swimming instructor at the Essex recreation complex.
"She cared about everybody," said Mark Couture, l'Essor's school chaplain. "She would do anything for anybody."
"It's deeply affected our students and our staff," said Sylvestre's high school dance teacher Holly Dougall. "It's just heartbreaking to lose a student so young, so bright, so energetic, and so full of potential."
A funeral is being arranged at Reaume Paul Funeral Home in Comber, but details are not yet available.