Dear Mary, Chris, Anita and Family,
Barb and I were saddened to hear yesterday of Tom's passing and we send our love, thoughts, and prayes as we recall wonderful memories of times with Tom over a span of many years.
Tom and I met in the early 80's playing softball in a lawyer's league for the Ogne, Jenks, Ecclestone, Alberts and Stuart Team. We would all gather after the game for some beverages and a lot of laughs. We became friends and then got to know each other's wives and families.
Tom and I played a lot of golf together over the years. Tom almost always beat me in golf. We went on several golf trips with friends to Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head, and Florida.
We even had a wonderful day of golf with our fathers. And not too long ago we played with our sons.
Tom and I also played a lot of raquetball. Tom always beat me in raquetball.(%^**&^$#%) It was always a good workout and afterword we would enjoy a beverage and talk about everything and anything. It was in those conversations that Tom would share his love of his family, Mary, Chris, his parents, siblingsetc. Tom loved to tell and we loved to hear his stories of his Sheboygan upbringings, his home, and especially stories of Molly and John. In fact i had heard so much about his home that we made a point to visit his home on a trip to Wisconsin just a few years ago. (We also had a nice visit with his sister Carol and her husband, Eugene). Interestingly, when we went to play golf at Whistling Straights I got into a long coversation with the starter and he grew up just down the street from Tom and knew the Knatz Family.
In the last years Tom would speak about his love for his grandchildren, Chloe and Courtney. He felt very blessed.
Tom was 10 years older than I and was like a brother to me. Over 30 years we shared a lot of thoughts and informatin about our lives. It has been a wonderful friendship. I will miss him but think of him often with great memories over the rest of my life.
And whenever I have a Johnsonville brat, which I always prepare TK style, I will be reminded to toast my good friend.
Love ya man, and peace be with you all
Nelson and Barb Stieper