Funeral arrangements set for bus crash victims

Posted: Updated:

As the Paramus community mourns the fifth-grader and middle school teacher killed in Thursday's school bus crash, there are still students in local hospitals recovering from injuries they sustained in the violent crash.

Officials say 21 of the 43 adults and children injured were taken to Morristown Medical Center.

The condition of the injured victims is unknown, but state police say that some were in critical condition shortly after they arrived at area hospitals Thursday night.

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The incident occurred Thursday when 38 children and seven adults from East Brook Middle School were on the bus en route to a class trip traveling west on Interstate 80.

Their bus, one of three headed out on the field trip, collided with a dump truck and crashed on its side in the median around 10:30 a.m.

Authorities have not said how the crash occurred, or released information on the bus driver.

The family of teacher Jennifer Williamson Kennedy confirmed she was killed in the crash, and on Friday night the family of Miranda Faith Vargas confirmed on a GoFundMe page she was the student killed, saying they are devastated by the loss.

The East Brook Parent Teacher Association has since released a statement that reads, “As we mourn the tragic loss of these beautiful angels, we continuously pray for the students and teachers who remain in the hospital and those who are dealing with their injuries and scars both physically and emotionally."

Interview: NJ Statewide Traumatic Loss Coalition coordinator Maureen Brogan
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A townwide memorial service will take place at Our Lady of the Visitation Church in Paramus Sunday night at 7:30 p.m.

Funeral arrangements have also been announced for both Williamson Kennedy and Vargas.

Viewing hours Miranda Faith Vargas will be from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday at Marracco Memorial Chapel in Clifton, and her funeral will take place there Monday morning.

Middle School teacher Jennifer Williamson Kennedy will have viewing hours Tuesday and Wednesday evening from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Vander Plaat Memorial Home. Her funeral will be held at Our Lady of the Visitation Church Thursday morning at 10 a.m.

The mayor said the entire town is welcome.

Gov. Phil Murphy has ordered flags at state buildings to be flown at half-staff on Monday in the memory of Williamson Kennedy and the student.

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