Harford County Sheriff’s Office investigators on Tuesday shed additional light on the accident which claimed the life of County Council President Boniface’s son a day earlier, indicating that the crash on the family’s Darlington farm may have occurred in the early morning hours as the youth was returning to his home.
Benjamin Boniface, 20, was killed after he failed to negotiate a curve in a road on the family’s 387-acre Bonita Farm and the 1994 Ford pick-up truck he was driving left the roadway and crashed through a fence, parts of which penetrated the windshield and fatally injured Boniface.
At the time of the crash, Boniface’s truck was traveling into the farm and away from Harmony Church Road, according to Monica Worrell, spokeswoman for the Harford County Sheriff’s Office. The crash occurred approximately seven-tenths of a mile from Harmony Church Road, she said, near a large stand of trees as marked on the map below.
Boniface’s accident is being investigated as an unattended death, and Sheriff’s Office investigators determined no one else was present in the vehicle at the time of the crash.
Still unclear is the exact timing of the accident. The Sheriff Office report states that a nightwatchman in the property, Kevin Fatemi, told police he saw Boniface drive onto the property at 1:30 a.m. However, Worrell said that Boniface’s vehicle was actually heard, not seen at that time.
The report states that “Boniface and his truck were not found until about 0415 hours by Fatemi.” According to police, Fatemi called Boniface’s home and woke his father, who came to the scene and performed CPR on his son while Fatemi called 911. The call was entered into the county’s computer-aided dispatch system at 4:51 a.m. EMS personnel arrived and Boniface was pronounced dead at 4:58 a.m.
No evidence of the use of medications or illicit drug use was observed, according to the Sheriff’s Office report. Worrell said any presence of alcohol in Boniface’s system at the time of the crash, along with other standard tests conducted in cases of unattended death, will be determined by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore.
In an online obituary, Boniface was remembered as “a pure happy simple soul” who was working as an arborist and on his family’s farm at the time of his death.
Visitations have been scheduled for Thursday at McComas Funeral Home in Abingdon from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., with a Mass of Christian Burial to follow Friday at 10:30 a.m. at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church in Aberdeen.
From McComas Funeral Home:
Benjamin Joseph Boniface, a pure happy simple soul, age 20, of Darlington, MD, passed away suddenly on June 18, 2012. A lifelong resident of Harford County, Benjamin graduated from John Carroll High School in 2010 where he played lacrosse and volleyball. He was currently working as an arborist, as well as, working on the family farm. A fan of Bluegrass music, Ben was a gifted guitarist and also enjoyed playing the mandolin. He was an avid golfer and loved spending time on Deer Creek with his friends more than anything.
Benjamin is survived by his parents, William Kennard and Barbara Elaine Pinamonti Boniface of Darlington, MD; brother, William Richard Boniface of Darlington, MD; sister, Bethany Helen Boniface of Darlington, MD; grandparents, J. William and Joan Warfield Boniface of Darlington, MD and Richard J. and Rosemary E. Pinamonti of Havre de Grace, MD, along with many aunts, uncles and cousins.
Pallbearers will be Sam Hopkins, Chris Hinder, Mike Hinder, Tony Calcagno, Luke Hinder, Harrison Gaeng, Liam Gaeng and Ben McGuirk.
In lieu of flowers, please consider contributing to a fund in Ben’s memory providing tribute to life in the Deer Creek Valley he so loved. Those contributions may be sent to: Memorial Fund for Ben Boniface, c/o Harford Bank, 8 W. Bel Air Avenue, Aberdeen, MD 21001.