Ernest Albert SURPRISE and Lola Montez RAGON were married on 27 Nov 1895 in Lowell, IN.
Ernie was born April 13, 1876, northeast of Lowell in the community now known as Lake Dalecarlia on land homesteaded by his grandparents, Peter and LaRose Taylor Surprise who settled here in 1834, coming from Canada. His father, Oliver Surprise, one of Lowell's Civil War veterans, and his mother, Carlinda Thompson Surprise, were prominent early farmers. Ernie, too, farmed the Surprise land for many years. For 15 years he worked for his younger brother, the late Charles L. Surprise of Hammond, selling out bankrupt stores. In his late years he moved to Lowell from the farm and did carpenter work. He was always an ardent gardener and grew flowers with outstanding success.
The Surprises' contribution to the progress of pioneer Lake County is recorded in its earliest history written by Rev. Timothy H. Ball.
Generous of heart and jovial, Ernie was a popular youth and played his "fiddle" for the community square dances at Jones school which was disbanded in 1925. On November 27, 1895, he married Lola M. Ragon of Lowell, a school teacher, and they were the parents of 10 children. The eldest, Percy, died while serving with the U.S. Army during World War I. Lola passed away May 6, 1955.
Survivors include two daughters, Mrs. Mildred King and Mrs. Myrtle Myers, both of Tampa, Fla.; seven sons, Kenneth of Lake Dale, Arnold of Gary, Roger of Chicago, Oliver of Woodbury, New Jersey, Albert of Rockford, Ill., Charles L. of Lowell and Harry of San Francisco, Calif.; one sister, Mrs. Hermie Tilman of Long Island, New York, who marked her 90th birthday Sept. 29; also, 20 grandchildren, 19 great grandchildren and many cousins and other relatives in this area.
Memorial services were conducted in the Sheets Funeral Home at 2 p.m., Sept. 28 with Rev. O.R. Foster of the Lake Dalecarlia Community Church officiating and he was laid to rest in the Lowell cemetery beside his wife and son.
Go to Ernest A. Surprise, "Pioneer History Index," for further information. Return to Lowell Biographies.