WYOMING, MI — A 13-year-old who died in a hunting accident has been identified as a Kentwood middle school student.
William “Billy” Gort Jr. was a seventh grader at Pinewood Middle School.
School officials posted a notice about his death Tuesday, Feb. 21 on the school’s Facebook page and said counselors would be available Wednesday at the school.
State police have released few details about the shooting.
Troopers were called at 3:52 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 18 to East Cleveland Road near 192nd Avenue in Oceana County on a call of a “hunting accident.” They found Billy had been shot in the head.
The teen was transported to Mercy Health Partners’ Hackley Campus in Muskegon where he later was pronounced dead, police said.
Billy’s great-grandmother, Cathy Yeaw, said her grandson was hunting with a young friend and an older man when he was shot. They were hunting for squirrels.
She described him as a “very good boy” who loved to hunt and also participated in a wrestling group.
“He was a very lovable boy,” she said. “He was trying to help his (baby) sister learn to walk.”
“He just loved his family,” Yeaw said.
She said he enjoyed spending time with his grandfather. They went on outings together.
Billy’s uncle set up a GoFundMe page to help defray funeral expenses for the teen’s parents.
On social media, Pinewood Middle School teacher Chas Schaner spoke about Billy as a likable young man.
Funeral services for William Gort Jr. are 11 a.m.Thursday, Feb. 23 at Frontline Bible Church, 8283 Pfeiffer Farms Dr. SW.
Visitation is 5-8 p.m. Wednesday at Stegenga Funeral Chapel in Wyoming, 3131 S. Division Ave., and one hour prior to the service at the church.