Daughter of Waterbury mayor involved in fatal Holy Cross team van crash in Florida

Posted: Updated:

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — A 20-year-old member of Holy Cross college women’s crew team was killed and several of her teammates were seriously injured when their van crashed in Florida.

Vero Beach police say the rented transport van was carrying roughly 12 students when the driver made a left turn into the path of a red truck Wednesday morning.

One of the teens involved in the crash is the daughter of Waterbury, Connecticut mayor Neil O'Leary. Officials say Maggie O’Leary was in stable condition after the crash. 

Officers say they responded to the scene and helped to rescue the girls from the van. 

“Our officers pulled three of the girls out of the vehicle,” police spokesman Darrell Rivers said. “They were actually trapped inside the van.”

He said the female passenger in the front right seat was pronounced dead at the scene. College spokesman John Hill identified her as Grace Rett. She celebrated her 20th birthday Tuesday.


All 12 people were taken to the hospital, including the driver of the van.

“There were a couple of critical and some very serious injuries. I’m just going to leave it at that. Some already had surgeries,” said Rivers, who said the girls’ families had been notified and many were already on their way to Florida.

Th college, which is located in Worcester, Massachusetts, planned to hold a meeting on campus Wednesday afternoon for students who wanted support, saying chaplains and counselors would be available.

Rivers said the preliminary investigation reveals that both vehicles had green lights and the van should have yielded to the truck. The driver of the truck suffered minor injuries.

The Associated Press helped to contribute to this article. 

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