How Donut Mogul, NHLer Tim Horton Really Died

Stellar work by Glen McGregor of the blog afewtastefulsnaps as he recently made public, for the first time, the official report from various Ontario agencies of the mysterious death of former NHL player and donut shop mogul Tim Horton in 1974.

Tim Horton Death Report

For those of you out there who are unaware, Tim Horton was Hall of Fame NHL player with the Leafs and Rangers, Penguins and Sabres in the ’50s, ’60s and early ’70s. In 1964, he started a chain of donut shops that has since grown to nearly 3,000 stores around the world. Most of the locations are in Canada and the U.S.

Horton died in a horrific single-car accident in in 1974 yet despite his celebrity, until McGregor obtained the ancient crash report from the Archives of Ontario, the details of Horton’s death remained somewhat fuzzy.

From McGregor:

I found a loophole in Ontario’s Freedom of Information law that allowed me to get a copy of his autopsy.  Under Ontario law, the privacy exemption that keeps information like autopsies from public view expires 30 years after the subject’s death. That meant Horton’s file was no longer covered by privacy provisions as of Feb. 21, 2004.

It took more than a year before I finally got the file sent to me via the Archives of Ontario. I wrote a story  based on the autopsy in 2005 (Citizen links expire after three months, so this will have to do).

Police have long maintained alcohol was not a factor in Horton’s fatal accident, but from the official police account and toxicology report obtained by McGregor, we can now indisputedly confirmed that Horton was twice over the legal limit when he died.

But the 61-page report reveals details well beyond Horton’s blood alcohol level.

In the early morning hours of February 21, 1974, Horton was driving from Toronto to his home in Buffalo following a Sabres-Leafs game at MLG, Read more…