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Guard rails installed at deadly Niles car crash site

The family of Steven Rough looks for closure as Berrien County closes off a troubled road.

Guard rails were installed Saturday along Bond Street in Niles, the scene of the deadly car crash that killed Rough and Autumn Mehl back in February.

“What if your family was in their shoes?” said Rachel Holloway, friend of Autumn Mehl.

It’s a question that’s haunted this community since February.

One deadly accident exposed a troublesome road in Niles for many drivers.

“Despite the fact that there’s two lives lost here we feel that it was a dangerous road nonetheless,” said Jeremiah Diaz, Steven Rough’s cousin.

The calls for guardrails along Bond street grew louder after the tragic deaths of Mehl and Rough.

“He kind of had this fun, flirty but just playing attitude,” said Diaz. “He was very, very fun so we’re going to miss that.”

Months later Rough’s family is finding peace knowing Berrien County crews finally blocked off the sides of that narrow road.

“To prevent any future accidents from happening and save someone else from the same grief that we’re going through, I think it's a proper thing to do,” said Diaz.

It’s a bittersweet victory for this community, as it won’t erase the past.

“I’m pretty attached to the kids emotionally so to that the whole family is getting that relief is a good thing,” said Holloway.

And even with a reminder yards away from where the new railings stand, this community is hopeful they will prevent more accidents from happening in the future. 

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