10/27/2012 05:01 EDT | Updated 12/27/2012 05:12 EST

Megan Wolitski, Alberta Girl Who Died After Van Crashed Into Classroom, Wanted To Be A Teacher


ST. PAUL, Alta. - The family of an Alberta girl who was killed when a minivan smashed into her classroom says she wanted to be a teacher, like her mother.

Sheldon Oberg confirms that his niece, Megan Wolitski, was the girl who died following Thursday's incident in the community of St. Paul.

The family has released a statement that says Megan had a passion for dancing, especially ballet and jazz, and was also a swimmer.

Three Grade 6 girls were pinned by the van after it smashed into the basement of Racette Junior High School shortly after the morning bell Thursday.

They were airlifted 200 kilometres west to an Edmonton hospital with critical injuries, but police announced Friday that one of them had died.

RCMP have charged Richard Benson, 46, with dangerous driving, resisting arrest and possession of a controlled substance.

"Our precious Megan was taken from us. We are devastated by this loss. She was a beautiful, smart, and caring girl," the statement from her family says.

"We would like Megan to be remembered for the incredible girl that she was. She loved her family and loved to take care of her sister and baby cousins," it continues.

"She touched so many lives with her kindness. On behalf of her family, we thank you for your thoughts and prayers."

The family also asks people to pray for her injured classmates.

Benson is to make his first court appearance Monday in St. Paul.

Benson's relatives say he suffered from seizures and was likely having an attack at the time of the crash. His brother, Walter Benson, says family members who have spoken with him in jail say he dropped his children off at school that morning and blacked out right before his van left an alley, drove through a fence and into a classroom.

Police have said Benson was combative with officers during his arrest at the school, but was later co-operative and remorseful. Investigators are waiting for blood tests to determine if he will be charged with impaired driving.

A vigil took place outside the school Friday night.

The school board says it is providing counselling at its high school in the community this weekend for students and families affected by the tragedy.

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