Our Monthly Story

Edmund Tong

Section S, Lot 773
Pine Hills Cemetery


Edwin Alonzo Boyd, the son of a police officer, pulled his first bank robbery on September 9, 1949. On the heels of his success, he pulled off six more but got caught the next time out. Imprisoned in the Don Jail to await trial, Boyd escaped with his two cell mates, Steve Suchan (alias Valent Lesso) and Lennie Jackson. (Jackson had an artificial foot in which he had managed to conceal hacksaw blades!) Once on the outside, the three men, along with Boyd’s brother Norman, formed the notorious Boyd Gang which spent the next few years robbing banks and terrifying Torontonians. On March 6, 1952, Edmund Tong, a detective sergeant with the Toronto Police Force, was shot by Steve Suchan. Tong died 17 days later; the cause of death was given as pulmonary embolism; he was 48 years old. Suchan and his accomplice, Leonard Jackson, were eventually captured in Montreal. The rest of the gang were rounded up, and they were all sent back to the Don Jail from where they, once again, managed to escape with the help of hacksaw blades! A little over a week later, they were re-captured at a farm in North York. Tried and found guilty of Tong’s murder, Suchan and Jackson were hanged back-to-back at the Don Jail on December 16, 1952. Boyd was given life, but only served 12 years.


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