The deaths seem to be the result of the toddler attempting to drag his father out from under a comfortable but airway-blocking down pillow. While the child intended to bring his bedridden father out from under the cushion and down the stairs to a freshly-prepared luncheon, he instead brought the heavy pillow down upon both of them, cutting off a crucially important supply of fresh air.
The father was one Bill Keane, an upstanding but often financially strapped parent of four, and a child who was likely either second-oldest Jeffy or foolhardy eldest child Billy (the child's ability to speak in the above panel provides clear evidence that the tyke is not the ever-mute youngest boy P.J.).
This isn't the first time a horrific catastrophe has befallen the characters of this seemingly bucolic little strip. Dolly, the only girl in the family, once tore her brothers in half. And we've long suspected Dad had a drinking problem. Perhaps this was the cause of today's dreadful calamity?
Authorities say they continue to investigate.
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