Fireman James Edgar Dyer of Sandown Fire Brigade died in a motorcycle accident on 20 February 1926, alongside his friend Alan Augustus Simmonds.

 

The events of that day and the inquest that followed were comprehensively reported by the County Press. Returning from an Island Challenge Cup football match in Shanklin on Simmonds' Humber motorcycle the machine was about to take the brow of the Skew bridge when it impacted straight in to the front of a bus at 35mph.

Simmonds was found crushed beneath the bus and Dyer was thrown some distance away with fatal injuries. The bus driver was completely exonerated with the coroner finding that Simmonds was riding too fast, that his wife refused to ride with him due to his erratic riding and that the handlebars were known to have become stiff. It was the first and only time Dyer had ever ridden on a motorcycle.

Dyer had served in the brigade since 1918. His funeral, on 24 February, was attended by around 60 members of Island brigades. His coffin was conveyed to the Christ Church on Sandown's old manual engine, then carried to his last resting place by his brigade colleagues A.White, B.Holbrook, W.Batchelor, E.Brooke, J.E.Creasy and J.Nicholas.

Rest in peace Fireman Dyer and Mr Alan Simmonds.

A sketch map of the crash scene as it appeared in the Isle of Wight County Press following the inquest.