Tommy Gary Towell, Sr entered into eternal rest on October 21, 2020, at home with family. Tommy’s passing was quick and unexpected as he received diagnosis on Sunday, October 18 of terminal brain cancer. The family quickly pulled together to surround him with love and plenty of foot rubs in his last days.
Tommy was born April 5, 1954, in Enid, Oklahoma to Walter P. Towell and Ida Jennice Hopping/Whorley. He was the sixth of six boys and moved to Heber-Overgaard when he was 4 and to Snowflake shortly thereafter. It was in Snowflake at the El Rancho where he met the love of his life Shelia, to whom he dearly referred to as his “closet case”. They married in 1974 and had 4 bundles of joy. Tommy’s family was near and dear to his heart and treasured family gatherings, becoming a Dutch oven master to feed the crowds.
Tommy worked for the Apache Railway for years until moving to the Papermill where he retired in 2008. His most notable contributions to the community, however, were done through his volunteer work. For 18 years Tommy volunteered for the Snowflake Fire Department where he served as Assistant Fire Chief for 10 of those years, sharing perks of the jobs to the kids getting them front row seats to the fireworks display and getting them debuts down Main Street riding in the parades. The volunteer work did not end there, he also was a volunteer referee for the Town of Snowflake basketball games; and as an Arizona Ranger, where he was able to showcase his expert marksmanship skills even with only one good eye. Tommy was also involved in the church and served in the Knights of Columbus.
The thing to be remembered most was Tommy’s humor. From charging quarters to the kids to use the bathroom to the very end of convincing his nurses to bring him kisses (possibly Hershey kisses, but who can be sure).
Tommy is survived by his wife, Shelia; children, Tommy Gary Jr, Theresa (Dominic), Tabetha (Joe), Troy (Ashley); grand-children, Chris, Angel, Prestin, Becky, Bill, Vicky, Alexis, Aspen, Maria, Evelyn, Trenton, Trevor, Shayna, Michaela, and Dominic Jr; numerous great grand-children; brother, Ira (Minx); and an extended family of in-laws, nieces, nephews, and all his Bingo Sweethearts.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Walter and Jennice; his brothers, David, LeRoy, Bob, and Larry; his nephews, Willy, Terry, Bobby Joe, Walter, Marvin; and his nieces, Cricket and Cathy.
The Services listed below at Our Lady of the Snow Catholic Church will be held at the OLS Community Hall.
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