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DEMOLITION TRIBUTE: Hinen’s spirit carries on at 4-H derby

July 15, 2013

Many derby cars at Saturday night’s Whitley County 4-H Demolition Derby had a “Skinny 7” sticker on them, in honor of Justin Hinen, a 4-Her and avid derby participant, who died in a snowmobile accident in March. Post & Mail photo / Nicole Ott

COLUMBIA CITY — Whitley County’s 4-H Fair was more than just a project for Justin Hinen, it was a lifestyle.

Hinen passed away at age 21 after a snowmobile accident in March, but his presence still carries on at this year’s fair.

At Saturday night’s demolition derby, a moment of silence was held for Hinen, and many of the derby cars had a sticker with his nickname, “Skinny” and the number 7 (Hinen’s derby number).

“The demolition derby is a big deal in our family,” Justin’s brother Jeremy said. “My brother and I grew up with it. 4-H and derbys are all we knew.”

Jeremy and Justin both participated in the demolition derby since they were old enough at age 16.

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