Thomas “Tom” Wade Abbott
August 20, 1939 ~ November 6, 2022
It is so hard to put into words the loss of someone as special and unique as Tom. As a special love and as his wife this is an honor to share.
Thomas Wade Abbott was born August 20, 1939 in Freemont, Nebraska to Charles Wade Abbott and Beatrice Irene Picket Abbott.
As a young child his family moved to Boston where Tom started elementary School. A couple of years later the family moved to Burlingame, California. Tom grew up in this beautiful city in the San Francisco Bay area.
Tom attended Shattuck School in Minnesota, a Parochial School from 1954 to 1955 where he was a member of the Crack Squad, an elite group that performed drills with 1872 Remington Rifles. During Tom’s time with the squad they performed in cities throughout the Midwest, the group never lost a competition. This experience was good for education and Tom’s personal development.
Tom moved back to Burlingame to finish his High School years from 1956 -1957. After graduation Tom took the opportunity to tour Europe, and bravely did it on his own. It was a different and safer World then. What a beautiful world and kind, friendly people he met. Several months later he bought a V.W. and had it shipped home and came back to the good ole USA.
Tom was still not ready to settle down and because of his love of the ocean he joined the Coast Guard out of Alameda, California. Now he saw more of the world, but most of it was covered with water. He was honorably discharged on June 17, 1960. Once again he returned to Burlingame.
Tom began to renew a friendship from High School with Shirley Hayes. Tom and Shirley were married on April 23, 1962. They had 3 children together, Linda, Janie and Tommy. Tom and Shirley later divorced.
Tom went to work for W.P. Fuller Paint Company and during his career had many advancements that included moving several times with his young family. He traveled to different accounts he had in Utah and met many amazing people and developed a close friendship with Sid Halton who worked at a cabinet manufacturing company that Tom serviced. Over conversations, they tossed the idea of starting their own company. They found 3 investors and with the funding and help they started Classic Cabinets which became the largest cabinet manufacturer in the Salt Lake Valley and at one time had over 400 employees. They gave a lot of people a beginning in their first jobs and later, a lifetime career.
Tom often told the story of how “he” took two young men, Scott Halton and Jeff Bobo under his wings and showed them how talented and gifted they were and still are. He bragged all the time that they were just like family. He would comment frequently about how “they can repair, make, break and repair again anything put in front of them.” Classic Cabinet had a successful run from 1971 till 2007 with the final doors closing when Tom retired.
The next few years Tom traveled but this wasn’t always enough for his racing mind. He helped friends, family, neighbors and strangers when needed. When in 2017 he ventured out to the world of dating on a computer. This is where his final chapter in life began. His future wife Joie was also trying this computer out. When on the website popped up a picture of a handsome man in a Hawaiian shirt, holding a cute little dog wearing a matching Hawaiian shirt. A dog lover herself, she boldly typed a response. They met that afternoon for coffee and coke, sat for 2 hours and the adventure began. From the beginning and being seniors we wanted quality of life together and hoped for quantity. Quality is just what we were given. We traveled often and went on one adventure after another. We met each other’s families mostly living out of state. Holding hands, laughing, and teasing all the way. After dating for 18 months a strong marriage was entered into on August 20, 2018. This date was for Tom’s birthday so he would never forget. He often said it was the best birthday gift he ever received.
Now the last chapter for Tom has ended and Tom has gone on to a reunion with many of his loved ones who have gone on before him, his parents Spud and Bea Abbott, son Tommy and his little Buddy Bubba. Those left to cherish his memory are his loving wife Marilyn “Joie” Smith Abbott, daughters Linda Abbott and Janie (Shane) Morris, former wife Shirley Hayes Abbott, grandson Wyatt (Shilo) Morris, granddaughter Megan Morris, and his new first great granddaughter Hayes; Joie’s family Michael Smith and Eric (Amber) Smith, all stepson’s; step grandsons Mason Smith, Kannon Smith, and his cute little step Granddaughter Emma Smith; Sisters Nancy Swift, Jane and Pete-E Lightee and Katherine Abbott as well as many friends that he has made over the years.
Tom’s request was for cremation and no viewing or big fuss to be made. His urn will be laid to rest at Valley View Memorial Gardens at 4335 West 4100 South, West Valley City, Utah on Friday, November 18, 2022 at 12 noon. Please join us for a small service with military honors being provided.
To show your love and respect for Tom, remember to reach for the stars, follow your dreams and you are never too old to take new chances in life.
The family gives a BIG THANK YOU to all the family at Carrington Memory Care for the love and care you gave Tom the past three months, you truly have been our strength, we also want to thank Brian Bartlett from Memorial Mortuaries for all his gratitude and help for taking care of Tom.