My research didn’t find any proof that members of the Hickey and McLaughlin families who I was researching were involved in the Halifax Explosion. Most of the known victims were identified and can be found on Nova Scotia Remembrance Results but there were victims who were not identified so the possibility of family members being among the dead cannot be ruled out.
As for my personal connection with the explosion based on living in the North End of Halifax, I lived on Prescott Street which is just above present-day Robie Street. Prescott Street had not yet been developed in 1917 and, at that time, the street that is now called Robie was called Longard Road. However, the area which later contained Prescott was in the badly wrecked area on the plan showing the area of devastation. I often walked from my house on Prescott towards the area of the docks and passed through the area that was devastated by the explosion. In spring the scent of lilacs perfumed the air and I fancied that the blossoms were grown in soil enriched by the ashes of the fires that burned the homes felled in 1917.
Next year will mark 100 years since the Halifax Explosion. Commemorative events are in the planning stages. Keep an eye on http://www.halifax.ca/HalifaxExplosion/index.php to find out the latest news about commemorative events. Further information about the explosion can be found at https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion and http://www.cbc.ca/halifaxexplosion/.
Part of the devastated area of the North End of Halifax.
The approximate area of later Prescott Street has been added with an X marking
the site of my previous residence.