Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Stoddard Online

Stoddard Online: Continued from part seven. . .

The days wore on. It was now more more than six weeks since anyone was recorded as having seen any of the American hunters alive in the Gaspe' region. Proof of their existence was now nothing more than several cardboard boxes containing human bones in a back room at the police station. Stark reminders, they were indeed, however, the American administration was neither impressed or satisfied. This situation must conclude immediately in an expeditious fashion. There was only one way of making a very grim situation appear better, and that would be by bringing someone to justice. These words would be echoed by Premier Maurice Duplessis through his crack investigative team that he had assembled in Gaspe'.

Captain Alphonse Matte decided to embark upon a search of the area in the woods, a search that very definitely should have been carried out before the remains were removed to Gaspe'. This is where Captain Matte and Sgt. Henri Doyon would again lock horns. Sgt. Doyon had repeatedly insisted earlier that the area should be scoured for any and all clues, however, he could see very early on that Captain Matte was on a witch hunt. He could now see that Matte had found his witch. The witch in this case was none other than Wilbert Coffin.

You will recall earlier that it was Captain Matte who had ordered the only way that Wilbert Coffin could partake of the search for the bodies would be in a police car in the accompaniment of police officers. These officers consisted of Conatable Lewis Sinnett as driver of the patrol car and Sgt. Henri Doyon as team leader. In reality, Wilbert Coffin was not actually taking part in the search in Captain Matte's mind, he was subjecting himself to a secret study of his movements.

Captain Matte was now anxious to learn about Wilbert's movements during his trip into the forest with the officers. Constable Sinnett pointed out that he felt that Wilbert kept looking more to one side of the road than the other, although Sgt. Doyon stated that Wilbert's movements were not out of the ordinary, and that his conversations and responses to questions appeared quite normal, and as well, he seemed anxious that the boys would soon be found. Sgt. Doyon would report later that he saw absolutely nothing incriminating in Wilbert Coffin's movements during the trip that could possibly implicate him as a murder suspect, nor was there anything in his conversations that would point toward involvement. This was definitely not what Captain Alphonse Matte wanted to hear.

We will later become aware of the fact that exerpts of conversations with Wilbert Coffin and the two officers during this trip would be taken out of context by Captain Matte, and used as incriminating circumstantial evidence at the upcoming murder trial. If this case were compared to the pitching of a tent, very definitely, Wilbert Coffin was the centre pole, and the pegs were now being hammered into place.

It was at this point that Captain Matte would send some of his top officers into the woods to search for, and gather evidence from around the crime scene. They were to conduct a systematic search, covering the immediate area where the bodies were recovered, as well as an exhaustive search of the surrounding area. The main problem here appears to be that none of these officers had ever been involved in a search of this magnitude. Equally disturbing is the fact that these officers knew little, if anything, of forensic crime scene testing beyond the use of a metal detector. One can ask the question here, Did Captain Matte really care? In his mind, he already had his man, so why complicate things?

Little was learned from the search in the woods. True, they did find one of the boys' wallets with five dollars in it. They found another wallet with no currencey in it. The crown would later argue at trial that this wallet had been robbed. A few canned goods were found that were somehow identified as those belonging to the hunters. Along the road leading from the crime scene, some other items were found that were identified as those of the American hunters. These items consisted of a camp stove, gas can, binocular case, and two sleeping bags. It was decided that these items were thrown from a moving vehicle, based on the fact of where they landed in the ravine adjacent to the road.

As alluded to earlier in the story, Captain Alphonse Matte's search leader, Captain Raoul Sirois found what could have been a very key piece of evidence. He stumbled upon the carcas of a bear in close proximity of where the bodies of Richard Lindsey and Fred Claar were discovered. One can only assume that Captain Sirois sensed a grave danger to his own safety from this dead bear, so he did as he was taught at police school. The rule states, when an officer senses danger, or fears that his life is threatened, he is justified in deploying deadly force to control the situation.
The application of deadly force to an already dead bear takes that rule to a whole new plateau.

In reality, there should most definitely have been an autopsy done on the bears carcass to determine cause of death. Did it mysteriously die there at the crime scene of natural causes? Had it feasted on the human remains? Did it die from bullet wounds? Sadly, it was destroyed as a crime clue when Captain Sirois shot it with his service revolver. Again, the high level of stupidity reigned supreme.

Meanwhile, back in Gaspe', Dr. Jean Marie Roussell, the provincial pathologist had conducted his investigation of the boxes of bones at the police station. He was later taken to the spot in the woods where both had been found. He was there to conduct the site investigation that should have been done before the remains were disturbed. After completing his notes he was returned to Gaspe' and Doctor Lionel Rioux, the area coroner convened a private inquest that was slated for July 27, 1953. This would be an opportunity for Wilbert Coffin to be questioned by the coroner in the presence of the police, in order to determine if there was enough evidence to take the case to trial. The inquest was originally slated for 1:00 PM, however, Wilbert did not arrive until later in the day when the inquest was reconvened for 7:00 PM.

At the conclusion of the private inquest hearing of July 27, the findings in short form were that three human remains found in the forest near Gaspe' had been identified as those of Eugene Lindsey, Richard Lindsey, and Fred Claar, all of Hollidaysberg, Pennsylvania. It further stated that all three had met death in an unnatural way, by a person or persons unknown. Again, this would not be what Captain Alphonse Matte wanted to hear. It was very apparent that an inquest jury would not be quick to condemn anyone without a much more orchestrated plan on the part of the Quebec justice ministry.

Captain Matte, was about to set just such a plan into motion. In his mind, Wilbert Coffin was his man, and this man presented the path of least resistance. In his mind, it should be easy, because anything that he did to accomplish this feat, would fall within the graces of Premier Duplessis, because they shared a motive for quick resolution. The end result of course would be that Ottawa and the American government would be off the back of Premier Duplessis, and Captain Alphonse Matte would emerge the hero and be subject to all the perks that were sure to follow after cracking such a case that presented an international audience of this magnitude.

In reality, with the lack of a real investigation that should have been broad in nature, Captain Matte was in a quandry. Afterall, the Americans were after Ottawa, Ottawa was after Duplessis, and Duplessis was after Captain Matte. Without doubt, it would be full speed ahead to build a case against Wilbert Coffin, and woe unto anyone who got in the way. The next day, July 28, 1953 would truly be "the beginning of the end" for Wilbert Coffin.

Lew Stoddard
Posted to site August 03, 2006

The next posting will deal with the time frame leading up to and including the public inquest of August 27, 1953. The results of this inquest will showcase, perhaps one of the ugliest displays of "justice" known in the Canadian justice system. You will also read of the investigation of Wilbert Coffin, his arrest, his treatment, the treatment of Marion Petrie, right up to the trial date in Perce', Quebec. This is the part of the story where deceit, manipulation, and dirty tricks take on new meaning.
It is also the part of the story where you might want to study exactly what "democratic process" really means when the system is allowed to tailor it's own meaning, as a means of touting a hidden agenda. . .


K Cormier said...

Lew Stoddard,

Nice to see your new posting. Sure can see the tempo picking up in this now. I am glad you are writing this. It needs to be told. This situation needs to be made right. God Bless all the Coffins and the Amrerican families as well.

K Cormier
Hull, Quebec

Kevin G said...

Tell all, and tell it like it was. I like your style, and sock it to them. I think you do a great job of reading peoples minds. Good quality.

Kevin G
Nanaimo, B. C.

G Ainsworth said...

Lew Stoddard,

If I need a psychologist I will phone you right away. Your inner thoughts on what some of these people way back when might have been thinking amuses me, but you know what, it makes a lot of sense. Keep it up my friend.

Gordie Ainsworth
Saint John

Brenda C said...

I am curious to know how it is possible for you to find out things after the passage of so many years. How do you know it is accurate? I want to believe you, but some of this stuff is so unbelievable. All that we have ever known in our household about this case was that three bear hunters were shot and killed and that Wilbert Coffin must have done it as they hanged him for killing them.

Now you tell me that he was only charged with one killing, so I am so curious as to who killed the other two. Who killed these two then?

Brenda C
North Bay, Ontario

Lew Stoddard said...

Message to Brenda C in North bay, Ont

Brenda, you asked the question, who killed the other two people? My answer to your question is this. The same party was responsible for killing the other two people that was responsible for killing the first one that you refer to.

Lew Stoddard

Ps. Brenda. . . By the way that person who killed the first one that you mentioned was not Wilbert Coffin, but if you stay tuned to the web site, down the road a bit you will learn who is the guilty party. Thanks for your interest Brenda.

Fran M said...

This case has my mind in knots and twists and turns. I find that I have to reconfigure my mind on a daily basis whenever I look at this story. Interesting stuff though, you are saying it articulately.

Fran McGuire
Port Alberni, B C

Karen J said...

Mr. Stoddard,

I think it would be easy to sell you a bridge in the middle of the desert. Your story telling makes me smile though. At least you are entertaining on a hot summer day.

Karen Jessop
London, Ontario

dianepeter said...

karen j
you write this story makes you smile and is entertaining on a hot summer day.
wow, this time it is hard to say that I am glad you have the right to free speech. Why? I guess because you just twisted the knife that has been in the hearts of my family for the past 50 years. I would rather tell you to go sit in the cell my uncle had to for at least the same time he had to so you can think about what your are writing. I would also like to advise you to find something better to amuse yourself with than the heartache of others .
Fortunately for my family we can reread the the many kind comments of others to stop this fresh bleeding.
PS Have a nice day

Diane Peter
Uncle Bill's Niece

Tom S said...


Your last posting chronicles the events of this case in a very understanding way. I am impressed with your style, especially your matter of fact, and easy to understand approach. Great work Mr. Stoddard.

Tom Spears
Kelowna, B C

Dean C said...

I know that you have been working hard behind the scenes on this case Mr. Stoddard. I have come across your name on the internet in a few places where you were seeking information on this case. You show and display a lot more determination and drive than the judicial system did back then. Good Stuff, and I am sure he was innocent as well. I always have felt that way.

Dean Cleland
Halifax, N S

Lew Stoddard said...

"Message To All Readers Of This Site"

I am writing this message as a means of clearing up a few misconceptions of some readers of this site.

Firstly, I receive a lot of e-mail pertaining to this topic that I am working on, and I encourage that.

Ninety nine percent of the e-mail that I receive is from well meaning folks who are seeking clarification on various points, and as well, I receive a lot of e-mail from folks who are kind enough to point me in the direction of various things that I am seeking with reference to this story. You will notice that I am soliciting this information, and asking that people come forward on a continual basis. Simply, this job would be almost impossible without your help.

I do understand and expect there will be some who do not share my views, and, for one reason or another, not be in favour of me writing this report. It is the reasons that you state, that I take exception with.

I feel compelled to answer your concerns and accusations here on the public message board, as I do not believe in secret dialogue, which is why I have not responded by e-mail.

I have been accused of doing this report for monetary gain, and that I am a personal friend of the Coffin family.

As any member of the Coffin family would be quick to point out, I have never personally met any member of this family, although, it is most definitely my intention to meet as many of the family as possible one day.

I have been acutely aware of this case for many years, actually since a child. It intrigued me. I have always been convinced that justice was not served. It was always my intention, to one day do what I could to study the case, and apply my energies to help fix the wrong.

That opportunity presented itself in April 2006, when I phoned the city hall in Gaspe' to find out if there was still living relatives of the Coffin family in that area. I was directed to Marie Stewart (Coffin).

One Sunday morning I tracked down Mrs. Stewart by telephone, explained who I was, and what I was planning. Mrs. Stewart very kindly offered me any support that she could offer with reference to relatives. Never, did she attempt to influence my writings beyond "wishing me well" Mrs. Stewart is a very respectable, dedicated lady, and to this day, continues to be most helpful and supportive of my endeavors.

The second point that I shall deal with is the fact that I have received several e-mails from a particular officer with the Surete du Quebec (Quebec Provincial Police)

It has been suggested that I purposely trample on the police force. I have the greatest respect for law and order, and police officers. Our society needs them. I do however draw a very bold line between what appears fair and that which does not.

I stress, in my view, there very definitely did exist a level of policing that took place in this case some 50 years ago that was not acceptable in any society. In no way, do I compare all officers with this former regime, and indeed, I would hope that all officers would not want to be compared to policing of that era. If you choose to take it personally, that is your problem, however, these are my thoughts.

Now perhaps, I can get back to what I started doing in the first place, helping to expose a black mark on our society, and at the same time, making sure that it doesn't happen again.

Thanks everyone for listening and bearing with me. I love you all, and thanks for your support.

Lew Stoddard

G Laurier said...

if it means getting a few people mad then ao what . they will get over it and too bad some of these peoples diddnt get mad years ago when this happens then maybe would not have turned out like it did. i dont know why people get mad at the truths about something. my wife and i have learn lots about this on here and thanks you.

G Laurier
Bathurst, NB

C Marchand said...

Mr. Stoddard,

If your site had been around in the 1950's Wilbert Coffin never would have been executed and the guilty party would have been dealt with. Keep slugging.

C Marchand

The Davis Family said...

God Bless all the Coffin family, you have stood up well for the past half a century. Things are going to turn for you, hang in there.

Davis family in Perth Andover, NB

Ms. M Lawrence said...

To Mrs. Marie Stewart

You are a beautiful sincere person, I see you sometimes in the media. You hold yourself high, that is so real and good. I am glad to see this site writing about your brother. Bless you all.

Ms. M Lawrence
Williams lake, B.C.

R Patterson said...

Over the years I have read a lot about this case, but what I am learning now convinces me more than ever of Wilbert Coffins innocence. This is a good forum as never before have I been able to see public opinion expressed on the matter.

R Patterson
St. Johns, Nfld

Gene Landry said...

This is a very sad state of affairs when senior officers of the police force would grind other well meaning members into the ground as a means of getting their own way. This is most cruel, especially when in this case Sgt. Doyon would probably have solved this case properly.

This is nothing short of being an embarassment when things like this happen. I hate to admit that it took place in my home province. I do not believe for a moment that Wilbert Coffin was guilty of this.

Gene Landry
Cabano, Quebec

Murray T said...

I do not know a lot about this affair, but I do know that for you to put the hours and days in on this that you have, you are obviously convinced that a miscarriage of justice occured, and I do wish you well in your efforts to prove that.

I am anxious to learn the contents of your summation at the end of this story.

Murray T
Kentville, N S

Grant Edwards said...


As an old time reporter of the beat, I am curious and naturally nosey about this affair. Originally from the USA so not really up on the story, but have nosed around on the internet, and I see all the elements of suspense. I like your writing style.

Grant Edwards
Former Boston crime reporter

Bertha McDougall said...

If this case is as you portray, I can sure see why it would be very difficult for all the Coffin family for so many years. Goodness always prevails in the end, so I encourage all of you to stick with it.

Bertha McDougall
Edmonton, Alberta

Sadie Campbell said...

God Bless all of you and your large family Mrs. Marie Stewart (Coffin)

Sadie Campbell
Windsor, Ontario

G Porrier said...

I have just been studying the very long list of declared wrongly convicted in Canada. It is staggering, very scary.

I firmly believe that Wilbert Coffin's execution heads that list. I hope and pray this can be proven and at least clear his name. I realize that it can never bring him back, but if he was innocent, and I believe that he was, then this needs to be addressed. The mere passage of time does not make something like this ok.

I encourage all to do whatever they can to aid the cause of justice here, and if you know anything of this case, come forward now. This is my opinion, and thanks for being able to freely express it here on your site.

G. Porrier
St. Boniface

G. Abrams said...

Lew Stoddard,

Good to see you are alive and kicking. You and I worked together many years ago in radio in the cold cold north. Those were the days Hey Lew?

You have an active and lively site here. Glad to see you are onboard with this project. Like your writing, but then again, you always wrote the best newscasts.

Best of luck Lew,

G. Abrams
Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan

Gary L said...

Sir, you said it well in your comments when you stated that we need the police. For sure we do, however, as you stated, there is a bold line between what is fair, and what is not.

The sloppy manner in which this case was handled says one of two things, either the police were incredibly stupid, or they simply didn't care as they had already picked their target. I tend to think that the latter applied.

The manner in which the crime scene was handled was atrocious. This does not speak well with reference to fair and responsible policing.

This case is in need of being ripped wide open.

Gary Langdon
Swift Current, Sask

benny said...

I can see why the politicians dont talk a lot about this case , they are the reason that this happened to this man so come cleane and admit it and reviewe this case
thank You sir,

benny in Slave lake Alberta

Anonymous said...

You are writing this story very well, and I am positive I'm not the only one checking the site daily for the next piece. You have obviously spent a lot of time investigating the facts. It is good to see the positive comments left by others as to what a fantastic job you are doing.

Must be a dreadful thing for a loved one to be accused, charged and sentenced for any crime, but to have this happen for a crime you know they are innocent of must be a hell of a lot worse.

Good luck to you all in this situation being made right!

Marie Coffin said...

My name is Marie. I am Wilbert Coffin's sister. It has been 50 years since my brother was hung for a murder that he did not commit. It has been an absolute nightmare.

It is a miracle that so many people are coming forward to help. Over the years, I've felt so helpless wondering what I could have done. The Anglican Church of Canada and the Canadian Legion tried but with no success. Jacques Hébert and lawyer Gravel worked tirelessly but to no avail. Alton Price has spent years working on my brother's case. You, the public, should read all the books that have been written about my brother. So much injustice!

Before he died, my brother appealed to the government for permission to marry his common-law wife. Appeal denied. For what reason?

I feel my brother's death was the reason the death penalty was abolished in Canada. But what a price he had to pay. My brother fought in the Second World War. He and my other three brothers came home safely. What rejoicing in our home. Little did we know what a nightmare was ahead of us. What a horrible way for anyone to die.

My brother Wilbert was such a kind, gentle man, always ready with a helping hand to anyone who needed it.

May God bless all of you who are in support of my brother's name being cleared. I have prayed for this for over 50 years and now feel that God is answering my prayers. It is people like the lawyers for AIDWYC (Association in Defence of the Wrongly Convicted), Alton Price, Lew Stoddard, and Cindy Patterson, who give me hope that my brother's name will be cleared.

So please keep sending your comments to this web site. They warm my heart. Write letters to your Members of Parliament and sign a petition. Surely, surely the government will review this case.

My heartfelt thanks to everyone,
Marie Coffin
Gaspé, Québec

W Tremblay said...

It truly amazes me that even in a corrupt system that authorities could get away with holding such a sloppy investigation as they appeared to in this case. Especially, the fact of not doing an investigation and complete search before victims remains were removed from a crime scene.

W Tremblay
St. Johns, Nfld

M Woodward said...

If this thing was as you say, then how come a review has not happened years ago?

If it is as you say, then this whole thing is deplorable, since it had to end in a man's death.

M Woodward
North bay, Ont

Claudette Roy said...

Keep jabbing at this thing Mr. Stoddard. Better late than never, and at least you are trying hard. That says a lot.

Claudette Roy

Cecile Richard said...

I tend to get very emotional when I hear of things that have such an effect on families left behind, but this whole thing defies imagination. Mrs. Stewart (Coffin) you are a very strong person to weather the gale as you have with the rest of your family.

Certainly, you are a great spokesperson, I have heard you speak on this a few times.

Cecile Richard

dianepeter said...

Dear M woodward
Thank you for your comments. I feel I have to respond . Many appeals over the years have been made . Jacques Hebert wrote a book exposing what went on He got thrown in Jail for contempt of court. Pierre Trudeau at the 1st inquest when protesting that the people doing the inquest were investgating themselves was told to shut up or he would be slapped with contempt of court. Alton Price is still waiting for a response.
Our family has many times over the years cried why. Why won't the gov't reopen this case and declare what they know that my uncle is innocent. This time though our family is starting to get hope because never before have we seen the support galvanize like it is this year. The Bloc Quebecois member of parliment from my home town is taking petitions weekly to the House of Commons. This is the first time any gov't has openly supported getting our uncles case looked at. The lawyers from AIDWYC have taken on the case and we are for the first time seeing how many people actually know that a miscarriage of justice occurred. This is because of Lew Stoddard allowing us to write comments here and the great number of people in my hometown and else where in Canada coming forward with infomation on the case and telling us how much they support us. The next step is to make sure that the Federal Gov't understands how much people want that to happen. All I can do I beg you to write your member of Parliment today and ask that this be looked at. They cannot hear the coffin family maybe if we all shout together they will hear.

diane peter
Uncle Bill's Niece

Kevin T said...

I feel lucky, I was on holiday's in Gaspe this July. Mom and my aunt took me to a church craft and bake sale. they had a pettion for wilbert Coffin there. I signed. Without ever having found this site until I returned home. If you are related to Gaspe people you have an opinion. On a previous visit in 2000 I search for the soul marker at the local cemetery stopping to say a prayer of forgiveness for the injustice. In reading this post I have been enlighten even further to the evil nature of tunnel vision and uncontrol power.

Lew Stoddard said...

A Special Message

Over the past few months there have been several folks comment on James Coffin, the son of Wilbert Coffin. As well, I have received e-mails asking me about him as well. I have been searching around the internet attempting to reach him.

I can now tell you that yesterday, August 14, James Coffin contacted me by e-mail. I consider this very special. Just wanted to share the moment with all of my readers.

Lew Stoddard

Doris McPhee said...

This is so special that James Coffin has contacted you Lew. I am so glad to hear of that. I was one of the people that e-mailed you in the past with reference to James, and you indicated to me then, that you were reaching out for him.

Everything I believe happens in it's own way, and at it's own time. God Bless all the Coffin family. My family is pulling for yours all the way in this.

Doris McPhee
Cranbrook, B Cfkegzema

David Doyle said...

Great Site here. Lots of information on this case. Very different from all the other sites. That is good. Keep up the good work and best wishes to the Coffin clan.

David Doyle
Prince Albert

james coffin said...

thank you all for your support we will need too all put together if we are ever going to be able to clear my dad's name there has been so many attemps and all have fallen short with the help of AIDWYC (Association in Defence of the Wrongly Convicted),Lew Stoddard Alton Price and the many who have started coming forward tell your friends tell everyone you know about this injustice that has been done we can get this solved if we all put together

(give thanks for a little and i will find a lot)

Mr and Mrs D Talbot said...

This is a letter to James Coffin.
Mr. Coffin I am so happy to see that you are alright and still with us. My husband and I have wondered about you so many times over the years, and how difficult this whole thing has been for your family.

It is so good to read your message here on Lew Stoddard's web page. I couldn't believe my eyes a couple of days ago when he posted that you had been located. So much is now finally coming out, have learned a lot about it here in the past few months. God Bless you Sir.

Mr. and Mrs. D Talbot
Sarnia, Ontario

Silvie T said...

More than ever I now want to see a conclusion for the Coffin family on this whole sordid affair. I say that now knowing that James Coffin has actually come onboard. James, I am so pleased for your decision to contact Mr. Stoddard.

This site has been opening many many eyes and ears from coast to coast in Canada. In doing so, I know that many people have come forward with information to assist Mr. Stoddard in his efforts.

Marie Coffin has been such a source of inspiration for all of us. Thank you once again James Coffin.

Silvie Theberge

Carrie and Tom said...

Hey Coffin Family,

Congratulations! You must be in the clouds now, knowing that James is amongst us. I am sure you are riding in the clouds. Wow. . This is so good, and Marie. . God Bless You. and to James I say Thanks for coming forward, and to you Lew Stoddard Thank you for giving everyone the opportunity to be part of all this.

Carrie and Tom
Nanaimo, B C

Anonymous said...

James Coffin, this is to you and all the members of your family.

"Put Yor Trust In Him And He Will See You Through"

A Friend Who Has Never Met You

Anonymous said...

Hey Good Stuff Coffin family, this thing taking shape now. Lew Stoddard keep turning over stones.


Janice M said...

Lew Stoddard I was a tad "mad" at you as you have been a "bit" slow with the next posting of your story but you know what. I forgive you, when I learn of the son of Wilbert Coffin coming on the web page. I know you are doing lots behind the scenes. I also determined yesterday that you have not been feeling well lately. I learned that from a former co-worker of yours. My thoughts are with you Sir.

Good luck to all the Coffinn family.

Janice M

Greg C said...

Lew Stoddard,

Sorry to hear of you not feeling well. Keep the chin up old boy and do what the doctor tells you.

Great job so far Lew. Pound them some more. I just finished re-reading your story from start to finish, that is the second time that I have read the whole thing. You make a lot of sense and you tell it like it was.

Good luck to the Coffin family, and glad to see that James Coffin has stood to be counted.

Greg C
Surrey, BC

Terri M said...

This is a very special message to Marie Stewart (Coffin)

Dear Marie,

I had tears in my eyes yesterday when I saw the message from Lew Stoddard which told the whole country that he had finally received a message from James Coffin. That was absolutely incredible!

You and your family must be on an all time high from that news. We were in Gaspe earlier and we signed your petition, and we signed it simply because we firmly believe that justice was not carried out in this instance.

You are an inspiration each time I hear of you, and am so glad to see you leave messages from time to time on this site.

Terri M
Oshawa, Ontario

G Walmsley said...

Your story is very interesting. I have always been aware of this case but my son only this morning showed me your web page sir. I am impressed with the way that you convey the story. you make it very easy to understand. i knew it was a complicated storyline but you put it well. Must be hard on all the families over the years. I wish them all good luck in this and am anxious to follow your website.

G. Walmsley
Belleville, Ontario

Gordie T said...

Hello James Coffin,

Nice to see you finally enter the picture here. Good following on this site. Always knew he would eventually make contact with you in some way. This really puts a personal touch on this affair now.

Gordie T
Powell River, B C

james coffin said...

i just had too stop back and thank Lew Stoddard, Aunt Marie, Dabbie, Judy,. all the rest of the family and all the folks that have lined up with us. With the help of God and the believers we are going to be able to clear my dad's name for ever. I must say that is has been very hard over the years too carry the Coffin name but i have always been proud to defened my dad's name against anyone. We all know i very did it the only thing he ever did wrong was to stop and give a hand to some one in need. I till this day never stop to help because you never know if you are the last to be seen with them and we all know what happens when you are the last too be seen with someone. Debbie and all the family have brough tears to my eyes at how much love they have given me i'm so so lucky to have family and friends like that. I have told Mr.Stoddard that i will see this through right to the end i'm going to take this to the media when the time is right and it is getting very close now
love to all and God bless everyone who has come forward to help we will need each and everyone

(give thanks foe a little and you will find a lot)

james coffin said...

sorry about but my hands don't seem to be able too type as fast as my mind would like correction ( We all know i very did it the only thing he ever did wrong ) should have been. We all know the only thing he did wrong was to stop and give a hand too someone in need

Anonymous said...

God bless you a thousandfold for locating our precious cousin Jimmy. Only God knows how much that means,and how good it is to have tears of JOY streaming down our faces,at last,and smiles that won't quit at having him back. To say we are all doing cartwheels, somersaults, high-fives, and shouting praises is mildly put. Bless you, Bless you. with love, Debbie

dianepeter said...

Dear Lew
I wrote you a while back and told you my family could never repay you for what you have done for my family. The debt we owe you just went up big time. I have appealed to the only one who can give you what we owe you. May God bless you.
Uncle Bill's Niece

PS I am going to join my family we are doing cartwheels on cloud nine.

Candice Marks said...

I am so happy at the momentum that this is gathering now. I knew, I just knew that one day things would happen. It has been a long road, a very long journey, but now I repeat what many others have already said. If you know something about this reach out now to Mr. Stoddard. He is truly dedicatred to solving this case, and setting the record straight. he can't do it alone, but togather we can do it.

I am so glad that he and the family have now made contact with james Coffin. I just read the article and this is great stuff.

Candice Marks
Halifax, Nova Scotia

Lise' Roy said...

One more second, one more minute, one more hour, one more day, one more year. A snowball starts from a tiny speck of snow and builds. The swell of support in this case through this web site since it started is a good example.

Keep the heat on Mr. Stodfdard, and to the Coffin family I say "Ride it out a bit longer, things will turn around."

Lise' Roy

Denise said...

To The Coffin family,

I just read the article. I know this has been "your special week" but I just want to join many others and say this will all come about in the end to your satisfaction.

I say Blessings to you Mrs. Marie Coffin (Stewart) I can only imagine your joy at now knowing that your nephew is alive and well. I cried when I read the article that was just released. A happy cry though.

Your friend Denise

L. Baker said...

I am filled with a sense of peace, knowing that James has been reunited with his family..a very very special time for all of them, and because of Lew's Blog, we get to share in the good news!
Last spring I read a news story on the Coffin Affair that again focused on one of my family members as a person involved in this tragic event. My Baker family have never discussed those days except amongst ourselves, and that led to much speculation on the part of many.So I decided to do all that I could to find the truth so that this terrible time in all of our lives might be put to rest, and the Coffins might have Wilbert's name cleared.
So, once again, I say to all of you out there who may have information on this case to put aside any need you may feel to protect others and come forward with any information related to this case. I have come to know Lew well, and can assure you that he is a man of integrity and will not reveal his source of information if that is what you wish.
When James Coffin sits down and tells his grandchildren about their great granddad, Wilbert Coffin,his telling should be able to end with the part about how, because we all cared enough to tell the truth and to pressure our government, their great granddad's name had been cleared and how the family celebrated! Truly that is how this story must and will end!

Anonymous said...

I am a member of the Coffin Family and I think it great to learn our very own history through this site and the many books and articles over the years. Until the last few years or maybe because I have gotten older and now HEAR what the adults discuss I have a better understanding of who we are. I am not saying our family is moulded through the tragedy it has endured but we are deffinately a strong bunch and very close we all know each other throughout the generations an aunt is an aunt an uncle an uncle and a cousin a cousin it doesn't matter if we are the son/daughter of a cousin or aunt or uncle 2nd 3rd or 4th cousin we all know each other for the most part. It doesn't matter the years we go without speaking to or seeing one another when we see each other or speak to each other we pick up right where we left off. I hope that Jimmy realizes no matter how long he has been gone nobody has judged him and everyone hopes he knows he is and has always been and will always be a part of the family. Christopher has alot of people to meet and we are all over Canada so lots of vacation spots as well. Nothing in the world compares to going home to Gaspe standing on the beach and breathing in the fresh air or walking into one of the family homes and feeling love.

M Cantin said...

In reference to the above message from an anonymous member of the Coffin family, I can relate to what you are saying. Families sometimes drift apart, but down deep they are still family and that is what makes our country strong, because when all else is said and done, it is the family unit that holds us all together.

I am convinced, as I have been for many years, that a very terrible miscarriage of justice occured in this case, and I don't care if fifty plus years have passed, it needs to be looked at. I hope Mr. Harper somehow gets lead to this web site to see how many ordinary Canadians are thinking the same about this.

M Cantin

Dennis Ryan said...

I just saw an interesting name surface in the last comment. I believe the name was a Mr. Harper.

Someone told me that this Mr. Harper guy works in Ottawa, and that he has this big fancy job, and this big fancy office, and that he can do great things, and he is dedicated to ensuring evils of the past against Canadians be corrected.

WOW! It would sure be good to have such a man as this read the complete Coffin affair.

D Ryan
Kingston, Nova Scotia

C Rutherford said...

Mr. Harper did promise new, clean, fair, and responsible government. He also committed to righting wrongs of past administrations.

Hey Hey Mr. Harper! How is your hearing, and your speech? Yoo Hoo Mr. Harper!!~ Heellooo Mr. Harper! I am talking to you.

C Rutherford
Truro, Nova Scotia

Anonymous said...

As has been suggested many times I think it important that Canadians make known to their respective members of parliament if they have displeasure with this affair. The government should expect nothing less than having to be accountable for this affair. They were afterall the ones who allowed it to happen.

Just an ordinary old fashioned voter
Somewhere in Canada

Anonymous said...

Hi Lew
Just wanted you to know how much I look forward to the next post on your site. Prior to reading your blog I knew nothing about this case. You have obviously spent a lot of time investigating the facts. It is great to see the comments left here by others interested in this case.

I am sure you will get this murder conviction overturned!

A friend in New Zealand

james coffin said...

we would like to thank Lew Stoddard for the great work he is doing on the site for the family. We are not on a witch hunt here we are all just trying to get my dads name cleared once and for all if there is anyone who can come forward with real information your indemnity will not be reveled if you wish. if you were a former police officer who seen anything that might help or a witness to some information that will help in some way or just a well informed person about the case. please please we are only trying to get the real truth out watch this site for more breaking news the Coffin family will be setting up a site to help people go to so you can sign a petition and we can get it off too Mr. Harper once again please come forward with any helpful information or you may e-mail Mr.Stoddard at again thank you for all who have come forward so far lets keep it coming in