Hockey legend killed in accident

On February 21, 1974, Toronto Maple Leafs Hall of Famer and Canadian fast food giant, Tim Horton‘s life was taken  after his car hit an elevated sewer grate and flipped several times, throwing him from the vehicle onto the highway near St. Catharines, Ontario at age 44.

Horton was on his way home to Buffalo, New York from a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. According to the autopsy, his blood alcohol level was twice the legal limit.  Dexamyl, an antidepressant that is now illegal, was also found in his system.

Tim Horton's car

Horton’s car at the junk yard photo: Hamilton Spectator

Horton was hesitant to sign a final one year contract with the Buffalo Sabers, but after being offered a 1973 De Tomaso Pantera sports car, he couldn’t refuse. The Sabers lost to the Maple Leafs 4-2 and he was named the game’s third star.

Horton started his hockey career in the 1949-50 season with the Maple Leafs. The defenseman was traded to the New York Rangers in the 1969-70 season. He also played with the Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabers before his untimely death. He participated in 17 post seasons and hoisted Lord Stanley’s Cup with the Maple Leafs. He played in seven All-Star games and  was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame as a player in 1977.

Following the deadly crash, Ron Joyce, Horton’s coffee shop business partner, started the Tim Horton Children’s Foundation to give Canadian and some American children a chance to attend summer camp. The popular restaurants also help make the world a better place by making sure their suppliers conciser sustainability a top priority .

Ottawa Citizen remembers Horton in 2014

Sabers Nation remembers Horton

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