“To the world he was one but to his family he was our world.”
Tom died peacefully in the arms of his loving wife at his home in Petrolia on November 22nd, 2015. His dog Bow was at his side. He turned 75 in March and for the last 5 and 1/2 years endured a remarkable and courageous battle with liver cancer. Having spent his twenties flying planes in the south, Tom returned to the Sarnia area to become a member of Boilermaker Union, Local 128 and for the next 35 years he built a reputation that he could be proud of. It was through his sister, Mary Margaret and brother-in-law Doug Horner that he met the love of his life, Jennifer Horner.
Tom and Jen married in 1970, settled in Petrolia and for 45 years built a life that represented loyalty and patience. Together they enjoyed the outdoors, traveling and visiting family; they were rarely apart. They raised three children in a home that modeled the merits of hard work. Tom was the doting father to Jerrine Bowman (Alvin Lazaruk) of Corunna , Heather Bowman (Dr. Cyrus Hsia )of London and Brent Bowman of Petrolia. He was the beloved Grandpa to William Lazaruk of Corunna, Jenyvette and Maitlyn Hsia of London, Clara, Tommy and Vanessa Bowman of Sault Ste. Marie. He shared a special relationship with Charlotte Wiseman, the mother of his Grandchildren and close family friend Sharleen Kelly. Tom is also survived by his kind-hearted cousin and confidante John Vansickle and his dear wife Connie.
Tom was raised on Collingwood Street in Sarnia by his beloved Grandma, Jerrine Bowman and his father Donald (Doc) Bowman. He is survived by his mother Victoria (VanSickle) Dileo and his brother George Dileo of Toronto. He shared a close relationship with his sister, Mary Margaret (Stokes/Horner) and his Aunt Orlene Pascoe of Sarnia. He is held dearly in the hearts of his sisters-in-law: Barb Horner, Rosemary Horner, Belinda Horner, Janey Gray and dear friend Judy Somer. Tom adored his nieces and nephews and had many close friends that often brought tears to his eyes when he shared their adventures together. His family was always first but his friends a close second; whether friends from the past or ones newly forged it was his need to be with his family and friends that gave him strength to endure. Giving was Tom’s thing to do, whether it was helping a stranger stay warm in winter, dropping a basket of food quietly in the night or lending a few dollars to family; he couldn’t help himself, he was compelled to give. In the end, Tom was rewarded for his generosity by being supported by remarkable professionals, neighbours and friends who gave to Tom what he gave for years.
In memory of Tom, the family kindly ask that you do a “Random Act of Kindness” or consider donating to Muscular Dystrophy Canada so that a cure can be found for his Grandson William.
Family and friends will be received at SMITH FUNERAL HOME, 1576 London Line, Sarnia, on Thursday, November 26, 2015, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. The funeral will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, November 27, 2015, at Smith Funeral Home. Interment will be held at Hillsdale Cemetery, Petrolia.
For more information about this obituary visit http://www.smithfuneralhome.ca.