Thomas Joseph “Tom” Walters, 84, completed his earthly pilgrimage and was welcomed into the arms of his Lord and Savior on the evening of Friday, May 24, 2019, at the Lower Cape Fear Hospice Care Center, one week before his 85th birthday.
Tom is survived by his loving family: wife, Catherine; sons, John Lloyd, Paul and Stephen (Jenny); grandchildren, Marisa, Ethan, Carter and Molly Fiona; and beloved grand-dog, Biscuit.
Tom had a difficult childhood between orphanages and different foster homes before landing in the loving home of the late Lloyd and Ellen Duebler in Middleton, New York.
Tom joined the U.S. Navy after high school serving during the Korean Conflict, where he received training as an electrician. Following his service, Tom attended night classes while working full time with a new family at home and earned a degree in electrical engineering from Adelphi University. He worked at Sperry Gyroscope, Lake Success, Long Island, New York.
Tom, Catherine and his young family moved from Queens, New York, to Webster, New York, in the mid-1960s, where he worked as an engineer with Xerox, designing and using quality control methods for Xerox copiers for over 30 years. He took an early retirement to provide daycare for his young grandchildren.
While in New York, Tom was active in his Catholic parish as a religious education teacher. He was a Cub Scout master while his sons were active in scouting, coached youth baseball and basketball teams and volunteered collecting and transporting food to many local charitable organizations.
As he did not have a true home for much of his childhood, Tom and Catherine welcomed many to their home over the years who needed love and a sense of home during the holidays, or children from the Fresh Air Program seeking a summer vacation home away from New York City.
Tom enjoyed baseball, basketball, football and any sport his grandchildren were playing in. He loved cooking, reading, history, and animals. Since 1999, Tom and Catherine resided in Wilmington, near Carolina Beach. Together, they provided daycare for their four grandchildren. Tom was a member of Immaculate Conception Roman Catholic Church. He enjoyed gardening, going to the beach and rarely missed a grandchild’s sporting event from tee-ball age through high school.
May Perpetual Light shine upon you, Tom. RIP.
Private services will be held by the family.
If you wish, donations in Tom’s memory may be sent to Lower Cape Fear Hospice Foundation, 1414 Physicians Drive, Wilmington, NC 28401.