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Edward Irwin Kaitting
b. 11/5/1866 d. 9/16/1909
Born November 5, 1866 in Belleville, Ontario, Canada
Died September 16, 1909 in Ottawa, Canada
aka: Edward Caton, Edward Keatting

Married to Louisa Taylor
Born April 3, 1871 in England

Copied from microfilms, Belleville, Ontario, CanadaDaily Intelligencer Friday, September 17, 1909


Ottawa papers give particulars, confirming the Intelligencer's despatch of last evening

OTTAWA CITIZEN: Edward Kaitting, of Belleville, who had a candy wheel on the exhibition midway, was killed this morning by catching hold of the keel of the Nassr airship, which. as it was ascending for the first time, had become entangled in the electric wires. A current of 2,200 volts passed through him and efforts at resuscitation were unsuccessful. Two other men, Malcolm Mac-Campbell, who boards at 119 Albert street, and is employed by the Ontario Wind Engine and Pump Company, and Carl Wingerter, of Missouri, an airship employee, were also stunned by the shock, but were brought around after hard work.

About noon Tony Nassr decided to make a flight and the ship was carried out of its tent to a clearing between the Aberdeen pavilion and the Arts building. The word was given for the men to let go the supporting ropes and the ship rose in the air. Before it had risen clear of the wires it was seen that there was danger of it becoming entangled. The propeller was turned on and Nassr did some clever maneuvering to clear the wires. He, however, was not successful and the propeller caught. Nassr then moved to bring the other end with the rudder to the ground and as soon as it came near enough several men rushed to grab it.

There were warning shouts, but too late. The three men were knocked out instantly, one of them, Wingerter, getting what was the longest shock as he did not instantly fall. Nassr himself was on the frame and his wife and others who were nearby called to him not to touch the wires and later to jump. He was only a few feet from the ground and jumped without difficulty. He suffered no ill effects from the current as there was not a complete circuit. The current which reached the other men who were on the ground passed through the propeller by means of a wire on the frame, the current being completed by the mens contact with the ground.

Immediately several rushed to the work of resuscitation. In this much valuable advice and practical help was given by E.W. Norwacer of Calgary, who received vascular training in ???? and work in a volunteer corps in England, and who is visiting this city en route to the old country, and by Henri Panet of Chambly, an employee of the Montreal Light and Power company. The usual means of rubbing and artificial respiration were followed and Campbell was the first to respond. Men worked with him just where he fell and when he was able to walk he went to the Citizen tent near by, where he remained till he was fully recovered. Wingerter was taken at once to the Citizen tent, and here, under the direction of Mr. Northcott, he was revived only after intelligent and persistent effort.

Kaitting was taken over near the dairy building and men worked very hard with him. It was evidently a busy time for the doctors for though many were phoned for, none could be found at home. Dr. Omer Wilson was the first to arrive in his automobile. He administered stimulants and continued the work of attempted resuscitation, but it was soon found that efforts were hopeless in Kaitting's case. The work had been continued over an hour when it was decided to abandon it and the body was removed to an undertaking establishment.

The dead man is survived by a widow and six small children. A brother and nephew were with him on the grounds at the time.

Before making the ascent Nassr had warned all to stand clear, but there was no way to forsee the sad accident which he greatly deplores.

OTTAWA JOURNAL: A most regrettable tragedy occurred at the exhibition grounds shortly before noon to-day when one man lost his life and two others were severely injured. The accident happened in connection with the first flight of the Nassr airship and has cast a gloom over the entire fair.

The dead man is Edward Kaitting, of Belleville, Ont., and the injured Malcolm MacCampbell, 119 Albert Street, city and Carl E. Wingerter, one of Mr. Nassr's assistants.

The accident was caused by the framework of the airship in ascending becoming entangled in a couple of electric wires of high voltage which were strung across the grounds. The men rushed forward and grabbed the framework of the airship and being standing on the wet ground caused a complete circuit and over 2,200 volts were received.

The three men topped over, apparently dead but owing to the heroic efforts of bystanders two were resuscitated but Kaitting could not be brought to life, although worked over for more than an hour.

Mr. Nassr was standing by his engine at the time and his wife pluckily shouted to him to jump, which he did, thus possibly saving his life.

The great presence of mind of Mr. Henry Panet, a representative of the Montreal Light, Heat & Power Company, saved beyond doubt MacCampbell's life. Mr. Panet is an expert electrical engineer and knew just what methods to adopt to resuscitate him.

Kaitting was a spectator and had a small stand on the Midway. His brother was also on the grounds at the time.

An enormous crowd at once rushed in and the police has great difficulty in keeping a sufficient space clear. Constabe Davidson, No. 34, was trying to resuscitate Kaitting, but without sucess, and made himself disagreeable with the reporters when they attempted to secure information, threatening to throw them out of the grounds.

Great difficulty was experienced in securing a doctor and not for about an hour was one secured. Dr. Omes Wilson was finally communicated with, and rushing to the grounds did all possible to resuscitate Kaitting, but without avail.

Mr. Nassr was not made aware of the seriousness of the accident until he returned from making a successful ascent in front of the grand stand. The flight was entirely successful and would have proved a great attraction had it not been marred by the tragic death of Kaitting.

When told of the death of one of the men, Mr. Nassr was deeply grieved. The sad occurrence was entirely accidental and was owing to the airship being unable in the limited space to clear the electric wires. The propeller catching in the wires tore off the insulation and allowed the current to run through the frame.



(Intelligencer special)

Ottawa. Sept 16 - About noon today, Edward Keating, a Belleville, Ontario visitor to the Ottawa exhibition, was electrocuted and two other men badly hurt here.

This was caused in a remarkably unusual manner. The Nassr dirigible airship, owned and operated by Anthony Nassr, of Toledo, Ohio, made an ascent towards noon. Coming down the airship got entangled in some way in an electric wire.

The crowds around swarmed near and some men grabbed the wire, this formed a short circuit and Keating was electrocuted his death being instantaneous.

Those injured are: Malcolm McCampbell, Ottawa and Carl E. Wingerter, one of Nassr's assistants.

The framework of the airship caught in the electric wires, the ground nearby was wet and when spectators and others touched it it formed an immediate short circuit sending 2,200 volts through their bodies.

The three men toppled over apparently dead, but owing to the heroic efforts of bystanders two out of the three lives were saved.

The presence of mind of Mr. Panet, a Montreal electrician, undoubtely was instrumental in saving the life of McCampbell.

This occurred when an ascent was being made and the airship was in no way damaged, but made a most successful flight, which thousands saw, and which is the first any dirigible airship ever made in Ottawa.

When Mrs. Nassr saw the danger her husband was in she shouted to him as he stood by his engine and he jumped. He hen not knowing of the tragedy until he returned, went ahead and made a successful flight. It is the first known case on this continent where a death was caused in this way.Edward Keating, the dead man, was a well known resident of this city, and sold popcorn and peanuts on the street corners, using a fancy apparatus. He was married, about 46 years old, and leaves a family.


The expressions of regret at the untimely death of poor Kaitting were heard on every hand last evening after people had read of it in The Intelligencer. Much sympathy is extended to the widow who has been suddenly bereft and left to face the world with six small children, the oldest being a girl about 14 years of age, and the youngest a babe in arms.

The victim of the accident was well known in the city and throughout the country, as he had been for some years past, attending fairs at various places. About three weeks ago, with his popcorn and peanut outfit he left here to attend the fair at Sherbrooke, Quebec. Since then he had been in the state of Vermont, doing the fairs and last week went to Ottawa, which fair proved to be his last. His brother, JOHN and nephew, EDWARD KAITTING, were upon the grounds when the unfortunate affair occurred.

The remains, after being prepared for burial, were sent to this city, arriving here at 1:15 this afternoon. A number of the deceased friends were at the station to receive and escorted them to his late residence, on the south part of Front street.


Ottawa. Sept 18 - At the inquest on the body of Edward Keating, who was supposed to have been electrocuted at the fair grounds Thursday in endeavoring to pull down the Nassr airship, which had become entangled in electric wires, it developed that Keating could have been revived had he not swallowed an upper set of false teeth.

Nassr's assistant, who was resuscitated, received a heavier voltage than did Keating.


The remains of the late Mr. Edward Kaitting who met with an untimely death at Ottawa on Thursday, were this afternoon interned. Many were in attendance at the obsequies and a number of beautiful floral tributes were contributed by friends. At the family residence, on South Front street, services were conducted by the Rev. Dr. Bishop of Bridge street church. The bearers were intimate friends of the deceased. Interment took place at the Belleville cemetery.