Dying without a will is a tragedy waiting to happen. This is a case in 1948 where a man became fatally stuck underneath his tractor, and used his pocketknife to scratch the words “In case I die in this mess, I leave all to the wife. Cecil Geo Harris” into the fender. His scratching constituted a valid will.

SASKATOON – This year marks the 65th anniversary of the infamous “tractor fender will,” where the dying wishes of a Saskatchewan farmer were etched into the side of a tractor as he lay pinned underneath.

“In case I die in this mess I leave all to the wife. Cecil Geo Harris” – those 16 words formed a case precedent for lawyers the world over and is commonly used as an example in law textbooks on wills and estates.

“It’s just a very unusual will and because of the circumstances under which it was written it’s attracted worldwide attention,” said lawyer and writer Geoff Ellwand.

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Dying Saskatchewan farmer’s will goes down in history