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Thomas J. Spalding

Mar 27, 2008

ESTHERVILLE — A memorial service for Thomas J. Spalding, 67, of Estherville will be held 11 a.m. Monday, march 31, 2008, at United Methodist Church in Estherville with Pastor Lynn A. Potter officiating. Visitation will be 5-8 p.m. Sunday at Henry-Olson Funeral Chapel in Estherville.

He died Sunday, March 23, 2008, at the McAllen Medical Center in McAllen, Texas.

Thomas Jaseph Spalding was born March 11, 1941, in Oshkosh, Wis., to Oscar and Ruth Spalding.

Tom graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh on June 8, 1963, with a B.S. in music education. He also did graduate work in music and counseling.

On June 15, 1963, Tom married Grace Wiley in Oshkosh, Wis. After teaching elementary and junior high music in Milton/Milton Junction school district and attending graduate school at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he accepted a job as assistant registrar at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. Tom was very active in the Jaycees and served on the city council for 12 years. He was very proud of the fact that while serving on the city council and as president of the Platteville Municipal Hospital Board of Directors they were able to accomplish the first merger of a municipal and private hospital.

Tom and his family moved to Estherville in 1981 when he became Director of Records and Registration at Iowa Lakes Community College until he retired in December of 2002. He was very active in the national and regional professional organizations for registrars.

Tom’s first love was his family. Last May Tom and Grace took their sons and families to Disneyland for a family vacation. Tom loved his grandchildren; he took pictures of Will’s baseball game, took walks with Hannah, took train rides with Kate, and read stories to Ava.

With their boys they traveled through most of the continental United States including their first trip to England and Scotland to see the Military Tattoo in Edinburgh. Traveling by car and train, Tom and Grace traveled on their own three more times to England, Paris, Italy, Switzerland, cruised on the Rhine, and in Germany stayed at bed and breakfasts and met many interesting people.

Tom had many interests including model railroading as a hobby. He traveled on trains, photographed trains, had several trains taking up half of the basement and was a charter member of Prairie Lakes Division of NMRA where he held several officer positions.

He loved music, playing in the ILCC jazz band when needed, trumpet in Northwest Iowa Concert band, bass in the Northwest Iowa jazz band, and attending the Monday Night Big Band concerts during the summer.

Not only did he enjoy walking around Estherville, but he loved to walk the beach as a Winter Texan on South Padre Island.

He was a friend of the Estherville United Methodist Church and belonged to the Retired Educator’s group. The license plate on his 1968 Mercury convertible was his amateur radio license number. He enjoyed the Saturday group at Mel’s and helping with storm watching.

Grateful for sharing Tom’s life is his wife Grace of almost 45 years, his son Rob and Kim and grandchildren Kate and Ava of Seattle, Wash.; his son Dave and Sue and grandchildren Will and Hannah of St Michael, Minn.; his brother Dick and Ann Spalding of Roseville, Minnesota; his sister Sue and Dave Davies of Wisconsin Rapids, Wis.; his brother-in-law Guy and Crystal Wiley and niece Chelsey Wiley of Erie, Colorado; and many cousins and friends.

Tom was preceded in death by his parents, an infant brother Ronald Oscar, and his wife’s parents. On-line condolences may be sent to: www.henryolsonfuneral.com