Michigan sisters killed in I-75 crash near Gaylord en route to vacation

The Detroit News

Two sisters, 22 and 16, were killed in a crash Sunday on Interstate 75 in Otsego County, Michigan State Police say, on their way to a family vacation. Their father driving a separate vehicle witnessed the collision.

State police of the Gaylord post say that just after 2:30 p.m. Sunday, they responded to reports of the crash on I-75 at South Old 27 Highway in Bagley Township. A preliminary investigation by troopers shows a woman, 21, driving a 2006 Mercury Montego southbound on I-75 swerved to avoid a collision. Her car crossed the median into northbound traffic and she struck a 2014 Toyota Prius being driven by a woman, 22, of Rochester. 

Two passengers, 22 and 16, in this 2014 Toyota Prius were killed in a crash on Interstate 75 near Gaylord. The driver, 22, was injured.

Two passengers in the Prius, Kaele Lynn Polzin, 22, and Sara Summerlyn Polzin, 16, both of Richmond, were pronounced dead at the scene. Troopers say their father, Mike Polzin, saw the Mercury cross the median and strike the Toyota.

Authorities said drivers of both vehicles were taken to Otsego Memorial Hospital. The driver of the Montego was later airlifted to Traverse City Munson Hospital with life-threatening injuries.

The crash remains under investigation.

(Front) Kaele and Sara Polzin (left) died in an auto accident on Interstate 75 Sunday, June 20, 2021, while traveling up North for a family vacation.

In a statement on Facebook, the girls' mother Lori Polzin called the crash a "huge unpreventable tragedy." 

"This afternoon while we were driving up north for vacation, a car heading south lost control, drove into the median, flipped over and landed on the car behind us. The car containing my daughters. Kaele and Sara were killed," she wrote on Sunday. "A split second took away 2 of my babies."

Polzin said the family is asking for privacy. The girls were cremated, but the family is asking that donations be made to the causes the girls were passionate about, she wrote.

Sara was a gay rights advocate and the family has chosen the Trevor Project for her charity. Kaele worked for Easter Seals and loved the children she worked with. 

A GoFundMe has been set up to collect donations. 

"Hug your loved ones. We are hurting," Polzin wrote. "Right now, nothing makes sense."