Howard Franklin Biggar, 20 year old son of the late Bell Johnson and the late George Biggar of Linden, Ontario, lost his life with tragic suddenness during a thunder storm in Grimsby about 5:30 o'clock on Monday afternoon when he was struck down by a bolt of lightning in the fruit orchard of his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. R.E. Johnson, Main Street west.
The young man with his uncle, Floyd Johnson, was sorting peaches at a table under a tree when the fatal flash of lightning killed him. The lightning first struck the tree, the unfortunate young man at the same time receiving the full force of the bolt as indicated by impressions left on the body of the victim.
Working opposite to him about 3 feet away was his uncle, Mr. Floyd Johnson and he too was knocked over by the force of the bolt and was dazed for a time. He was able to be about, however, the next day although much shaken by the severe shock he experienced, indications of the effect of the lightning being plainly visible under his right arm and on his left leg as well as across the front of his body. It was miraculous that he escaped death as he apparently also received the full force of the lightning as well.
His brother, Gordon, with Jimmie Johnson, the young son of Mr. Frank Johnson, were in the barn about 40 feet away sorting peaches and they too suffered from shock. The smell of sulphur from the lightning was very pronounced. The grandfather of the young man killed had left for the house but a few minutes before the tragic happening.
Dr. Gordon Sinclair, the coroner, viewed the remains but stated that no inquest would be held.
The young man was born in Fruitland. Both his parents passed away some years ago and he had been making his home with his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. R.E. Johnson. Up to last year he attended the Grimsby high school where he was a popular student. He was also a highly valued member of the Softball League this year. He pitched for the West End team, being a most competent player. The funeral was held this Wednesday afternoon at 2:30 o'clock from the home of his grandparents. Mr. and Mrs. R.E. Johnson, and was largely attended by citizens, including members of the various organizations with which the young man had been identified. Rev. Dr. Cline, of the Baptist Church which deceased attended, officiated, conducting an impressive service after which the funeral courtage proceeded to Fruitland where interment took place.
The pallbearers were Clifford Schwab, Frank York, Charles Graisley, Richard Bull, Louis Gane and Gerald Kelson. His immediate relatives who survive are his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. R.E. Johnson, his aunts, Mrs. Chas. Cattenburg, Mrs. J. Bull, Mrs. N. Reid, Mrs. Arthur Roach, Mrs. B. Hutty; his uncles, Messrs. Frank, Gordon and Floyd Johnson, W. and H. Biggar, and his step-mother, Mrs. Annie Biggar, of Lynden.
Beautiful floral offering sere sent by the following softball teams:
Officers and umpires, West End chums, Model Dairy, Trinity United Fruitland, Metal Craft, St. Andrew's, and the Girls' Softball team. Others from whom sprays and wreaths were received were: Mrs. O. Davis and Mrs. and Mrs. Stanley Dyment, Detroit; Mrs. L. Larson, Mr. and Mrs. W. Biggar; Mr. R. Johnson and family, Mr. C. Clattenburg and family, Mrs. N. Reid, Mrs. A. Roach, Mrs. B. Hutty, Mr. R.E.Johnson and family, and others from Lynden and Hamilton.