Thomas Curtis Hall, 84, passed away peacefully at Ridgewood Care Center on Thursday, September 3, 2009.
He was born on June 19, 1925 in Racine to the late Curtis and Florence (nee: Peterson) Hall. On October 29, 1949, he was united in marriage to Donna M. Fechner at Bethel Methodist Church in Racine.
Tom graduated from Washington Park High School and enlisted in the United States Navy and honorable served from September 1943 through April 1946. He served aboard the USSLCS (L) #7 as a radioman 3/C and survived when the ship was attacked by a Japanese suicide boat at 0310 hours, on February 16, 1945, and sank at Mariveles Bay area of the Philippines. He was taken to Samar by a Red Cross Hospital ship to recover from his injuries and spent four months there until the Navy could confirm his enlistment since his dog tags were lost when his ship went down. He received the Purple Heart for helping a fellow injured crewman stay afloat after the sinking until help arrived.
Tom faithfully served on the Racine Fire Department from 1951-1985. In 1969 the department was awarded a Class 1 rating; only seven other departments in the nation held that distinction at the time. Along with his fellow firefighters he was proud of the department's accomplishment. Tom retired as a captain of Truck 3, Station #2, after 34 years of service and enjoyed his time and friends on the department. In his retirement he liked woodworking and tinkering around the house and scratch built a model of the ship he served on.
Tom is survived by his wife of nearly 60 years, Donna; son, Thomas Hall; sisters-in-law, Sharon Patzke and Lilly Fechner; and other nieces and nephews. Many dear friends including lifelong friend, Harry Nielsen.
He was preceded in death by his parents; in-laws, William and Florence Fechner; and brother-in-law, Neil Fechner.
Funeral services will be held at Sturino Funeral Home on Tuesday, September 8, 2009, at 10 a.m. There will be a visitation at the funeral home on Tuesday, before services from 9 a.m. until time of service. Entombment with full military honors will follow at West Lawn Memorial Park.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to the Cancer Society or the Racine Fire Belles have been suggested.
The family would like to thank Dr. Michael Mullane, his staff and the entire staff of Hospice Alliance for your compassionate care and support.
Sturino Funeral Home
3014 Northwestern Ave., Racine 262 632-4479