Thomas Dwayne Williamson, 79, of Merkel, Texas passed into Jesus' loving arms September 8, 2021 after a long war with Parkinson's Disease.
Viewing and memory event will be September 13, 2021 from 6 to 8 P.M. Services will be held September 14, 2021, at 10 A.M at Elmwood Chapel. A procession from the chapel and Military Honors at graveside with prayer and celebration of his beautiful life will follow at Elmwood Memorial Gardens.
Thomas, Tom, T.D., Sarge as he was known, but better known as Daddy, Papaw, and Friend, was born June 9, 1942 to George and Iva (ne Follin) in Kalamazoo, Michigan. He grew up on a farm in Fulton,Michigan where he fell in love with animals, and especially huge tractors, motorbikes, and fast Hot Rods. He attended school in Athens, Michigan. He fondly recalls growing up on and near the Wakeshima Reservation, and Indian Mission with his family. He enlisted into the U.S. Air Force in 1961, and lived many places while he served including Maine, Alabama, Mississippi, Newfoundland, Canada, and Dyess Air Force Base where he was Honorably Discharged for medical concerns in 1968 as a Staff Sergeant . He was a Power Generation Specialist Surveyor/Draftsman, a member of the Chemical/Biological/Radiological Warfare Team, as well as an augmentee to the Base Police Squadron during the Cuban missile crisis. His last 2 years in service, he was the Squadron training NCO. He was thus awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal for Meritorious Service Medal to add to his collection. He was also a fine and awarded Marksman.
After his service, he worked for Caterpillar, Case, New Holland, Firestone, the City of Odessa as Construction Inspector, Certified Engineering Technician. He was a Licensed Professional Home Inspector and a Certified Shelter Manager Specialist. He obtained a Bachelor's in Business Administration from McMurry University in 1977. He owned and operated his own automotive and farm equipment repair shop for many years in Merkel. He was an ASE MasterTech for Automotive and Large Specialized Equipment. He retired from working very hard in 2010.
Tom was a staunch proud member of The American Legion Earl. S. Bailey Post #430 in Odessa, Texas for more than 46 years and had continued until his passing. He was a very proud member of the National Rifle Association Golden Eagles, Texas State Rifle Association, and the Sheriffs Association of Texas. He was hardcore Republican and would tell anyone who asked the Constitutional Rights of all Americans because he carried a copy at all times in his pocket. His love of old country music and his guitar, hill folk songs, especially George Jones and Elvis. Country Gold. He was known to listen to Santana and Led Zeppelin in car rides with his daughter Gretchen, his constant shadow, loudly. There was no pretension in Tom, he was truly a blessing, God's gift, to those he loved. He was a World War II history fanatic. He loved those Meerkats as well.
Tom enjoyed spending time with his Family and Friends, and will be missed dearly by each of them. He was the most wonderful and loving Father and Husband, Papaw and loved his Pets, especially Stormi Girl, his 24/7 companion. All animals were loved and fed well. He is survived by his wife Linda, his Daughter Gretchen Williamson of Merkel, her girls Emifay Dixon and Kaitlyn Justavick of Merkel, her grandson Jaxon Freed. Also his stepson Joseph Williamson of Hondo, Texas, and his sons Nathaniel and Adrian, along with stepdaughter Tamara Oldfield of Midlothian, her husband Gerald, of Texas, and their sons Crew and Junior. His Beloved friend Charles J. Wood, Jr,of Merkel, Texas and Brandon Freed of Abilene, Texas. There are many more step-grandchildren and great-grandchildren he loved as well. He is also survived by his sister Becky Knowles and her husband Terry of Union City, Michigan, his brothers David and wife Diane Williamson of Battle Creek, Michigan, Danny Williamson of Battle Creek, Michigan, Mike Williamson of Springfield, Michigan, and numerous loved nieces and nephews in Michigan.
He was preceded in death by his Mother and Father, his older brothers Bill and Jerry Williamson.
Special mention and thanks to Jenny, Chaplain Jim, and the Interim Hospice of Abilene caregivers and nurses, who are considered family, for the care and love given to Thomas and his family. Dr. Victor Hudman and his staff were caregivers most of his Golden Years along with his family as well. Pallbearers will be Charles J. Wood, Jr., Brandon Freed, Steven Grieve, Joseph Williamson, and members of the Texas Patriot Guard. Military honors will be rendered by the Air Force Honor Guard.
Tom is asleep awaiting his Lord's return. He is missed and mourned for this loss by those he held dear. His family will carry his Patriotism and beliefs until they all meet again in Our Father's Heaven. Memorials may be made to the Michael J. Fox Parkinson's Disease Research Foundation, Interim Hospice of Abilene, or any reputable animal rescue organization. All family and friends are invited to attend this celebration.