Household of Holland hit-and-run sufferer: ‘We would like closure’

Johnathan Herlein
An undated courtesy photo of Johnathan Herlein. (Facebook)

HOLLAND, Mich. (WOOD) — The family of Johnathan Herlein hopes the driver investigators are still looking for will help them understand his tragic death.

Herlein was riding his bicycle to work early Wednesday morning when he was hit on Waverly Road near 32nd Street in Holland. That driver stopped in the road to call 911; however, investigators say a second driver who ran over the 20-year-old never slowed down or stopped.

“It could’ve been an accident. It could’ve been more than that. We never really know until someone says something,” his younger sister Rheeni Will told 24 Hour News 8 Friday.

Not knowing who the driver is or why they didn’t stop is adding to the pain they’re suffering.

“You can accept it if it truly was just not paying attention and in a hurry and going to be late for work. You can accept that, but you can’t accept it if there was (sic) other factors involved,” Johnathan’s father, Steve Herlein explained.

Johnathan’s relatives say he recently found a good path for himself. The job he was heading to Wednesday morning was one he recently started and was enjoying.

“He had a plan and he had goals. He finally was making it happen for himself,” Steve Herlein said. “He just loved to talk about (his job.) I could tell he was happy and was happy with himself.”

Holland investigators have identified the vehicle the second driver was in as a white SUV.

“(It) just hurts to keep thinking about all the different possibilities and having that keep playing through my head. It just doesn’t feel good. It really doesn’t,” said Johnathan’s younger brother, Jakob.

Anyone with information in this case is asked to call the Holland Department of Public Safety at 616.355.1100 or email investigators at

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