Thomas E. Blake

    Thomas Eddy Blake, Tom, Big T, Spaceman-loving husband and father...
    Born on Feb. 26, 1959, the fifth and youngest son of Donald and Suzanne Blake, passed away Monday, Jan. 13, 2020, at home.
    Tom was preceded in death by his parents; and brother, James (Joyce).
    Previously residing in Dyer, IN, Tom had been a resident of Gobles since 2009. Tom grew up in a neighborhood of friends in Paw Paw. A 1977 graduate of Paw Paw High School and the Van Buren Skills Center, Lawrence, now Van Buren Tech, where he learned electronics, and participated in sports,  including basketball, baseball, and football.
    Upon graduation, Tom enrolled in ITT, attending the Fort Wayne, IN, campus where he achieved an associate’s degree. Tom described his time in Fort Wayne as “bachelor living” 101. He rented a large Victorian house, living with six roommates and their trusty dog companions on baked potatoes and popcorn. They held porch gatherings with the neighborhood to listen to the gospel music from the local church. Tom proudly paid his way through ITT by working the clean-up shift at the local Burger King.
    The new age of information technology created opportunities for Tom, as he accepted a job with Texas Instruments and relocated to Houston, TX. First as a technician, building circuit boards for computers and printers, and later as a service technician. He would travel Texas installing and repairing computer products for schools, hospitals, and businesses, including the NASA Space Center control room in Houston. Tom loved to travel through the Hill Country, playing his music loudly; singing out loud to his dog, Buzz.
    It was upon his return to Michigan in 1986 that he met his wife after a softball game. Different, yet alike, they grew together in love and understanding. They were married on the hottest day of the decade, July 30, 1988. The couple moved to Hegewisch, IL, then to Dyer, IN, where they raised their two children.
    Tom was an active member of the Dyer Presbyterian Church, serving as a Deacon. He coached community youth soccer and basketball teams,  encouraging every young player to “just have fun.” Tom continued to travel Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana, golfing for the most part, while installing and updating computer systems for the Hewlett Packard Company.
    Tom was notorious for arriving late. Consistent with “Blake Time,” after being diagnosed with cancer, many told him “you shouldn’t be here,” and yet he lived the life he loved for the next nine years.
    Tom is survived by his wife, Carolyn (Holland) Blake; his daughter, Cathryn; son, Sean;  brothers, Steven, Paul (Kathy), and David; mother-in-law, Marie Holland; brother-in-law, Jim (Patty) Holland; and sisters-in-law, Liz (Mike) Jones, and Becky (Dan) Miner; as well as many nieces, nephews, and lifelong friends.
    Friends were received Thursday, Jan. 16, at Adams Funeral Home, 502 W. Michigan Ave., Paw Paw. A memorial service will be held today (Friday) Jan. 17, at 11:30 a.m. at Warner Vineyards, 706 S. Kalamazoo St., Paw Paw.
    Contributions may be made to the Al-Van Humane Society.     
    To sign the online guest book, go to


The Courier-Leader & Paw Paw Flashes

The Courier-Leader & Paw Paw Flashes
32280 E. Red Arrow Hwy. • P.O. Box 129
Paw Paw, MI 49079
(269) 657-5080

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