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California Genealogy and History Archives

San Bernardino County and Riverside County


REV. JOHN B. TOOMAY, pastor of Bethel Congregational Church at Ontario, has rounded out a career of a quarter of a century of faithful work in the ministry, and is known as one of .the able thinker^ and public leaders of San Bernardino County.  

Rev. Mr. Toomay was born in Ray County, Missouri, in 1868, son of Edward and Martha Toomay. His father was a native of Cork, Ireland, came to America in early lile and served as a soldier in the Civil war. The mother belonged :to a family of Missouri pioneers who went to that state from Tennessee.  

Rev. John B. Toomay was an A. B. graduate from Otterbein University in Ohio, and subsequently received his Bachelor of Divinity degree from Yale College. Of the twenty-five years he has spent in the ministry fifteen were years of labor in church building and preaching in Missouri, while for ten years his duties have lain in California. He has been pastor of the Congregational Church at Ontario for the past four years. Two years ago he built an attractive home in Ontario, and his parents, now over eighty years of age, live with him.  

Mr. Toomay was camp pastor at Camp Kearney for a short time during the late war, and was prominent in all war activities during the term of the war. Among other duties he is probation officer for the west end of San Bernardino County. He is a member of the El Camino Real Club, made up of local educators and thinkers. He is a Mason and a member of the progressive wing of the republican party. Rev. Mr. Toomay is widely traveled, and a number of years ago he went abroad for an extensive tour of the Mediterranean countries, in the course of which he visited the cities of Rome and Athens and also Constantinople, Egypt, and the Holy Land.  

At Westerville, Ohio, in 1891, he married Miss Minnie O. Bender, daughter of Daniel Bender, of Ohio. Mrs. Toomay died at Ontario in 1919. She is survived by a daughter, Helen Toomay, now a student in Pomona College. Recently Rev. Mr. Toomay married Inez Crawford, a returned missionary from Japan. She is a daughter of John Crawford, a well known pioneer of Southern California. Mrs. Toomay has lived at Ontario since she was two years of age except for the two years she spent in her missionary labors in Japan.

History of San Bernardino and Riverside Counties 
By: John Brown, Jr., Editor for San Bernardino County 
And James Boyd, Editor for Riverside County 
With selected biography of actors and witnesses of the period 
of growth and achievement.
Volume III, the Western Historical Association, 1922, 
The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, ILL

Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011