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Man Jumps From Mackinac Bridge During Annual Walk

September 8, 1987

ST. IGNACE, Mich. (AP) _ A 40-year-old man accompanying his wife during the annual Labor Day walk across the Mackinac Bridge jumped to his death in an apparent suicide, officials said.

Ronald R. Courier, of Bay City, jumped 170 feet into Lake Huron from the east side of the bridge Monday afternoon, Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Zwicker said from the U.S. Coast Guard station at St. Ignace.

Divers recovered the body.

Courier and his wife were among an estimated 50,000 participants in the annual five-mile walk across the bridge, which connects Michigan’s two peninsulas, according to Zwicker and Walter North, executive director of the bridge authority.

″Witnesses saw him take off his coat, climb over the rail and onto an I- beam and then jump,″ Garcia said.

Authorities said they did not know why Courier jumped.

Courier may have been the first suicide from the $99.8 million bridge across the Straits of Mackinac connecting lakes Huron and Michigan, Garcia said. In another case in 1985 when a body was recovered below the bridge, there were no witnesses to confirm that it was a suicide.

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