At Pinette Dillingham & Lynch funeral home on Sunday morning, the parking lot was full by 9:45 a.m.

The funeral in Lewiston for Arthur “Artie” Strout drew more than 200 people. His ashes sat in a black urn engraved with his name. His pool cues lay crossed behind it.

Arthur “Artie” Strout.

Artie was playing billiards on the night he was shot at Schemengees Bar & Grille Restaurant by Robert Card, who killed 18 people and wounded 13 at Schemengees and Just-in-Time Recreation in Lewiston on Oct. 25 in the worst mass shooting in Maine history.

The crowd funneled in as Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man” played. Artie’s wife, Kristy Strout, wore all black and was draped in a maroon shawl as she greeted a receiving line that snaked around the room.

The couple’s kids sat in the front row clutching weighted bears, and Kristy sometimes left the receiving line to check on them. Photo collages of Artie made by his family lined the walls of the funeral home.

Kristy said she was overwhelmed by the show of support.


“It was breathtaking to have so many people come out,” she said.

The crowd included many of Artie’s siblings, his kids, his parents, step-parents, cousins and friends. Mourners milled around the room, and Artie’s 2-year-old niece Kamora plucked a white rose from the flower arrangement and handed it to Arthur Barnard, Artie’s dad. There were no speeches. By noon, 11 pages of names filled the funeral guest book.

Kristy Strout, center, hugs a loved one in the receiving line at her husband Arthur Strout’s funeral at Pinette Dillingham & Lynch Funeral Home in Lewiston on Sunday. Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer

Artie’s sister, Kimberly Bourgoin, was devastated at the loss of her brother, but she was also angry. “It’s just not fair; he shouldn’t have been taken from us,” she said.

As the crowd thinned, Chris and Tyler Barnard carried Artie’s ashes from the funeral home. Chris had the ashes tucked tightly against his hip.

“Don’t put him on the ground,” Kristy said, “and don’t drop him.”

Family and friends reconvened at Legends Pool Hall in Lewiston for a celebration of life for Artie. The parking lot was again full, and some had to park across the street at Subway.


The family arrived wearing white shirts with “Remembering my father Arthur Strout” or “Remembering my brother Arthur Strout” or “Remembering my son Arthur Strout” printed on the backs in red. As they filtered in, a bald eagle flew overhead through the crisp blue sky.

Artie’s father went to the mic and greeted the crowd. He thanked them all for coming.

“All these people here, man, it’s because they love this kid,” Barnard said through tears. The crowd moved in close and got quiet as he performed an original song, “A Long Way Home.”

“I take to the night like an eagle in flight, because I know I’ll find you some day,” he crooned. When Barnard finished singing, his teenage grandkids raced to the stage and enveloped him in a hug. “We love you, Bumpa,” they said, using the name that all his grandkids call him.

Arthur Barnard’s grandchildren hug him after he sang an original song at a celebration of life for his late son Arthur Strout at Legends Sports Bar & Grill in Lewiston on Sunday. Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer

Artie’s cousins were still reeling.

“It was random as hell, you know? He went to play pool and this happened. That’s not supposed to happen,” said his cousin Dustin Strout.

Artie’s urn was brought to the pool hall, too. It sat on a bar table with a rose branch on top.

Artie was a skilled billiards player, had been playing since he was 10, and competed in a league. His family says he used to pretend he was losing when playing a new opponent. He’d miss shots and leave most of his balls on the table – then when his opponent had only two balls left he’d sink the rest of his in just a few shots.

Artie’s friends and family played pool in his honor on Sunday night. They laughed and sometimes cried. They talked about gun control and about mental health. If there was one sentiment in the room, it was shock, that this had happened here. In Lewiston, in Maine, to Artie.

Jacob Edwards, 14, left, and Emmalee Edwards, 16, hug their aunt Kristy Strout at a celebration of life for her husband, Arthur Strout, at Legends Sports Bar & Grill in Lewiston on Sunday. Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer

Related Headlines

Comments are not available on this story.