Mart­in­town bank heist Claude Mcin­tosh Mac’s Mus­ings EDI­TO­RIAL@CORNWALLSEAWAYNEWS.COM 837 Pitt Street, Ccorn­wal­lll

Seaway News - - Opinion - Osnabruck Cen­tre home of

While one man waited out­side in the stolen get­away car on the af­ter­noon of Aug. 10, 1962 his two part­ners in crime, bran­dish­ing re­volvers, burst through the front door of the Bank of Nova Sco­tia branch in Mart­in­town.

“At first I thought it was a joke,” bank man­ager J. G. Tay­lor said.

But the vet­eran banker soon found out it was any­thing but a joke.

In those days ru­ral banks were a favourite tar­get. Sev­eral banks in the United Coun­ties had been held up. The OPP even had a ru­ral bank pa­trol.

To show that they meant busi­ness, one of the men fired a warn­ing shot over the head of the star­tled bank man­ager. Po­lice fig­ured he missed the man­ager’s head by about 12 inches.

The pair then or­dered the man­ager and two em­ploy­ees, Al­lan Reynolds and Ar­mand Lapierre, along with two cus­tomers to lie face down on the floor as they emp­tied the cash draw­ers.

They were the process of hav­ing the man­ager open the locked safe when the look­out in the car yelled, “We gotta get out of here.”

Po­lice weren’t sure what scared the look­out.

The trio quickly bolted, piled into the car and made a get­away with $4,000 in small bills. Not a bad haul at the time, even if they left thou­sands more in the safe.

The next af­ter­noon po­lice found the car, which had been stolen from Parco Vil­lage, aban­doned not far from the vil­lage.

Mean­while in Corn­wall, de­tec­tives were prob­ing an overnight break-in at the Do­min­ion gro­cery store at 234 Pitt St. a few days be­fore the bank heist. Thieves made off with thou­sands of dol­lars af­ter drilling into the store safe. They gained en­try to the store through a door on the roof of the build­ing that led to the boiler room.

Po­lice called it a pro­fes­sional job and thought it might be the same group that robbed the Mart­in­town bank.

ALSO THIS WEEK IN 1962: The foun­da­tion for the St. Lawrence High School $1.9 mil­lion ad­di­tion was un­der way. The school’s com­mer­cial depart­ment was be­ing moved to the old Cot­ton Mill com­plex dur­ing con­struc­tion. En­rol­ment for the up­com­ing school year was ex­pected to in­crease to 1,400. ... A ju­di­cial re­count con­firmed the elec­tion of city lawyer Lu­cien Lamoureux in the Stor­mont fed­eral by­elec­tion. He edged Con­ser­va­tive can­di­date Grant Camp­bell by 70 votes, the clos­est fed­eral race in the rid­ing’s his­tory. ... In­gle­side Tin­ney’s B/ A ju­niors were the Cen­tre City Soft­ball League reg­u­lar sea­son cham­pi­ons. Team mem­bers were Ed Duprau, Lyle An­der­son, Wayne Gallinger, Brian El­liott, Luc Guin­don, Lorne Thomp­son, Ster­ling Zeran, Ge­orge Riek­stins, Kenny Payne, Harry Fetterly, Odu Riek­stins, Bernard Warner and Ron Brownell. ... Fire gut­ted the

Ken­neth Tinkess. Rita Trudell (nee Beck­stead) passes along some “in­side” in­for­ma­tion on Ma Lalonde’s fa­mous Pitt Street 10- cent burger eatery. As a stu­dent, who lived a few doors away near the CPR sta­tion, she worked for Flo­rence “Ma” Lalonde af­ter school and on week­ends.

“They (Flo­rence and hus­band Ge­orge) were like my se­cond par­ents,” she said.

She re­called that the small diner had two stools at the lower counter near the en­trance and six stools at the higher counter. A juke box which got a lot of play was squeezed up against the wall.

The place had a long list of reg­u­lar cus­tomers. One was Frank Gad­bois, who de­liv­ered parcels for CPR Ex­press. He would stop in ev­ery day, sit at the same lower counter stool and or­der a large glass of but­ter­milk. It was the quin­tes­sen­tial fam­ily busi­ness. Ge­orge Lalonde sat on a stool be­hind the counter and helped with the cash reg­is­ter. Daugh­ter Gertrude and a son Les­lie helped out.

“Les­lie opened up early in the morn­ing ev­ery day,” she said.

“We also served Mello Roll ice cream, which some (of to­day’s) kids won’t know what I’m talk­ing about.”

Rita, now in her 80s, re­called the Ma Lalonde days as “the good old days.” Amen. THIS AND THAT: Does this have a fa­mil­iar ring to it? In Brant County (Brant­ford) a pay in­crease for the mayor and coun­cil­lors has be­come an early elec­tion is­sue. A new pay

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.