Brandeis identifies student killed in Waltham bus crash

26 other students and the bus driver were injured in the crash.

Debris remains at the scene of a Brandeis University shuttle bus crash on South Street in Waltham that left one person dead and 27 injured. Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff

A shuttle bus in Waltham taking Brandeis University students from a hockey game at Northeastern University crashed Saturday night, killing one person and leaving the remaining 26 students and the driver of the bus with “varying degrees” of injuries according to officials. 

Officials identified the person who died as undergraduate student Vanessa Mark.

“While Vanessa was currently on leave, she was living in Waltham and was an active and cherished member of the Brandeis community. We have been in touch with Vanessa’s family and will continue to stay in contact with them in the coming days, and we will keep you updated about ways we will honor Vanessa’s memory,” Brandeis President Ron Liebowitz said in a statement.


The university canceled classes on Monday and Tuesday, according to Liebowitz. While this will allow some students to travel home earlier for the holiday break, Brandeis will provide “additional opportunities to gather and receive support” for those that remain on campus.

The school’s Center for Spiritual Life will host a vigil at Harlan Chapel on Monday at 7 p.m., offering a “quiet, open space of reflection.”

The shuttle bus crashed into a tree on South Street at 10:32 p.m. Saturday, according to officials. Mark was pronounced dead at the scene. The other students and the bus driver were all taken to hospitals in the area to treat their injuries. 

Three people who were involved in the crash remained hospitalized as of Sunday evening, WCVB reported

“Brandeis has notified students, faculty, and staff of the accident; we are providing counseling and support to students and will continue to do so over the coming days,” Julie Jette, a Brandeis spokesperson, told The Boston Globe via email. 

A Waltham Police officer recovers a laptop from the scene of a Brandeis University shuttle bus crash on South Street in Waltham that left one person dead and 27 injured. – Jessica Rinaldi/Boston Globe

The cause of the crash is still under investigation by the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office, Waltham police, and the Massachusetts State Police, according to a statement. No charges have been filed.


The bus was owned by Medford-based Joseph’s Transportation Inc., which holds a “satisfactory” safety rating, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration — the highest rating available. Joseph’s did not immediately respond to Boston.com’s request for comment.

Brandeis held an on-campus meeting for students late Sunday morning, the Globe reported. Freshman Jadyn Maher, who attended the meeting, said that she normally takes the same shuttle to Boston on weekends, but decided to stay home Saturday to catch up on homework and because some friends had already gone home for Thanksgiving.

“It could’ve been anybody,” Maher told the Globe.

Brian Belliveau told the paper that he was on his way home Saturday night when he saw the aftermath of the crash.

“It was just kind of a surreal thing to witness,” he told the Globe. “The bus was totally destroyed, all the windows on the side were ripped open, and the front end was just totally smashed in.”

Anyone with information about how this crash occurred can call the Waltham Police Department at 781-314-3600.

“In a few days, many of us will be gathering with family and friends; while this holiday may be difficult, it is my hope that spending time with loved ones will help us begin to heal. When we return from the break, I know our community will continue to come together in support of one another,” Liebowitz said in a statement.


Staff writer Abby Patkin contributed to this report.


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