Friday, December 1, 2023

Tommy Haden

Home is the sailor, home from the sea,

And the hunter home from the hill,

Robert Louis Stevenson

We would also add ‘And the farmer home from the field.’ We will celebrate Tommy Haden’s full 92 years of life on Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2020, at 2:00 p.m. at the Vienna Fraternal Cemetery.

He passed away Monday morning, November 30, 2020 at Southgate Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Metropolis, IL.  

And a full, long journey it has been. He was born May 17, 1928 in Geddes, South Dakota, the son of Guy and Holda (Paulsen) Haden. 

At just 15, Tom’s independent and adventurous spirit led him away from home as he worked his way North until enlisting in the United States Navy at age 17. He sailed overseas during both World War II and the Korean War (serving from August 11, 1946 – December 14, 1951). 

But a farmer at heart, Tom settled into life raising hogs and growing crops on his beautiful farmland in Southern Illinois. 

Most importantly, he raised a family he adored with his wife of 37 years, Pauline. The two were married July 29, 1961 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in rural Massac County. 

Together they had four children who always kept them on their toes and who would later bless them with many grandchildren. Pauline left us too soon on September 3, 1998.

Tom was smart and tenacious, he also cared deeply, loved to laugh, had a hidden talent as a ballroom dancer, was an unbeatable trivia opponent, and could never resist a good farm sale.  He was always ready to gather with family and friends at fish fries, reunions, garden parties, Gourmet Supper Club dinners.  What a gift his 92 years have been. 

For the past 16 1/2 years, Tom has been with his very special friend and partner Linda Miller. Survivors include son George (Carla) of Vienna, daughters Mary (Chris) Hugo of Memphis, TN, Patty (Karl) Swanson of Sherrard, IL, Kathy (Eugene) Fahey of Chicago, IL, Lori Sailiata of Missouri. His grandchildren were his biggest source of joy. Izabella Haden and Shania Shipman, Alex and Nick Hugo, Laura and Ben Swanson, Liam and Fiona Fahey, Kiri and Melia Sailiata, a host of very dear nieces, nephews, cousins and many friends.       

Also preceding in death are siblings Dwight Haden, Jackie Johns, Belva Clayton and their parents Guy and Holda Haden. 

Memorials may be made to American Cancer Society or the Vienna VFW Post 8127.