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Obituary for Tom Blanchard
Tom Blanchard, 92, of Brookings, passed away in Portland, Ore. on May 2, 2015. Tom was born May 2, 1923 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota to Lewellis and Dorothy Blanchard. He attended school in Sioux Falls, and then moved to San Rafael, Calif. where he graduated high school. Tom worked at the Mare Island Shipyard in Vallejo, Calif. before induction in the US Army in 1941. He served as a mechanic before an honorable discharge in 1946 at the rank of Sergeant Technician 4th grade. Tom then worked as a mechanic for many years, as an insurance salesman and a subcontractor for years in Kyburz, Calif. He retired and moved to Brookings 1992. Tom was a great volunteer: 20 years as a fire chief in Kyburz, Calif. and, in Brookings, with Meals on Wheels and the Time Out program. He was active in the Brookings Presbyterian Church where he served as a deacon and sang in the choir. He started a church in Kyburz; it was the only church there at that time. Tom was also an active member of the Elks Lodge. Car racing was his great interest, driving midget, sprint and hard tops, Tom always followed all kinds of racing – especially the NASCAR Cup. Survivors include his daughter, Pamela Blanchard of Yucca Valley, Calif., niece Charme Williams and her husband, Ron, nephews, Don Newton and his wife, Kathy, Van Mosley and his wife, Michelle, and Kurt Mosley and his wife, Deborah; and his best friend and companion of many years, Virginia Vellutini. Tom was preceded in death by his wife, Effie Blanchard, his parents and a sister, Barbara Mosley. In lieu of flowers donations in Tom’s name may be made to the Brookings Presbyterian Church, PO Box 697, Brookings, OR 97415. Private inurnment will be at the WJ Ward Memorial Cemetery in Brookings. Redwood Memorial Chapel is assisting the family. Condolences may be expressed online at www.redwoodmemorial.net.