Police seek witnesses to bus collision that killed boy

Investigation into incident likely to be lengthy

By Paul Suarez, Columbian web producer

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Police are continuing the investigation of the crash that killed 11-year-old Benjamin Fulwiler on Saturday.

Investigators with the Vancouver Police Department’s Traffic Unit are gathering data and seeking to talk with anyone who witnessed the crash, police spokeswoman Kim Kapp said.

She doesn’t expect there to be any updates this week. “They’re very lengthy investigations,” she said.

In fact, investigators are still looking into the December crash that killed Margaret McCluskey, 88, as she crossed the intersection of Eighth and Washington streets downtown. Bus driver Al Purvis remains on paid administrative leave until police finish the investigation, said Scott Patterson, C-Tran spokesman.

The C-Tran driver in Saturday’s incident, Deborah Knox, 59, was also placed on paid administrative leave. C-Tran is conducting its own investigation but will wait for the final police reports to decide what disciplinary action will be taken in both cases, Patterson said.

Counselors at school

A group of counselors was available at Pacific Middle School, where Fulwiler attended, Monday to talk with students and faculty, said Carol Fenstermacher, Evergreen Public Schools spokeswoman. The counselors are with SMART, the School Mobilization and Response Team, a group of counselors from a variety of schools. Their visit could be extended further into the week if need be, Fenstermacher said.

“It’s really for anybody that needs it,” she said.

Facebook page

Family are inviting people to share memories and photos of Ben on a memorial Facebook page that was created on Monday.

Ben enjoyed music and was writing a song. The family plans on setting up a scholarship fund in his name in the next few days, the Facebook page said.

“Ben’s love of music and compassion for others will live on, we will see to it,” the page said.

The Clark County Medical Examiner’s Office will perform an autopsy.