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Thomas (Tom) Ray Hobson passed away at home on Saturday, June 21, 2014, at the age of 69 as the result of cancer. Visitation will be held on Wednesday, June 25, 2014 from 4 to 7:30 p.m. at Cedar Memorial Park Funeral Home. Funeral Services will be held on Thursday, June 26, 2014 at 10 a.m. at the Lovely Lane United Methodist Church, Cedar Rapids. Burial will be held at Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery with Military Honors.
Tom was born on July 9, 1944, to Jesse and Prudence Hobson, both deceased, in Washington, DC. Tom is survived by his wife Donna, sons Jordan and Matthew, a brother Joseph, sisters Sarah Hobson and Thelma Muire and her husband Chris, nieces, nephews, and grandnieces and a grandnephew. Tom was especially close to his parents-in-law, L.F. and Henryetta Eudy, and their children and spouses.
Subsequent to graduation from high school in Arlington, VA, Tom earned a degree in communications from the University of Alabama. He then joined the United States Air Force, serving in the Vietnam War. He was later stationed in England and Germany in the capacity of Public Relations Officer. Following his service to his country, Tom embarked upon a career path that led him to, among other companies, Reynolds Aluminum, Northern Telecom, Martin Marietta, and finally to Rockwell Collins.
Tom recently retired from Rockwell Collins after serving 23 years as the principal manager of government and public affairs. Tom joined Rockwell Collins in 1991 and served in a number of capacities representing the firm at the State and National level as a leader in advanced manufacturing aerospace and defense industries. A passionate and involved community champion for Eastern Iowa, Tom was a member of the Cedar Rapids Downtown Rotary, the Eastern Iowa Airport Commission, the Board of Directors for Gems of Hope, the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance and the Iowa City Area Development Group. Tom served leadership roles in the Iowa Taxpayers Association, the Iowa Business Council, the Association of Business and Industry, the Iowa Math and Science Education Partnership, and the Corporate Associate Partners of the National Lieutenant Governors Association. Tom served under three Governors representing his community and firm in various economic task forces and committees both in Des Moines and in Washington, DC.
Growing up in Washington, D.C. and Arlington, VA, Tom enjoyed politics and sports from an early age. He played Little League and worked at the U.S. Capitol. From his earliest days, Tom forged life-long friendships and recently attended his fiftieth high school reunion. Tom enjoyed family vacations, special outings, and long conversations around the dinner table. Tom was a much beloved and respected "big brother" to his three siblings, as children and as adults.
Tom was a beloved family man. He coached both sons' little league teams for many years and attended every sporting, scouting, musical, and dramatic event in which they participated. He took his family on many traveling adventures including Okoboji, IA, Mt. Rushmore and Yellowstone Nat'l Park, Minnesota lakes, the seashore near Emerald Isle, NC, annual family bike/campouts, and visits to family in Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, North Carolina, and Washington D.C. Upon special request, Tom announced "professional" wrestling matches in the family room and then somehow became the main competitor to take down. He had three-man baseball games in the back yard where he doubled as pitcher and coach. His guidance continued through college graduations and into his sons' developing careers, with motivation and encouragement in their independence.
By his side always, was his wife, Donna, who for 28 years shared a love and life partnership, treasuring him as the father of their two sons.
Throughout his life, Tom was a loyal and trusted friend to many. Tom was well-known for his love of golf, baseball, fantasy sports games, ice cream, pretzels and his avid support of Crimson Tide football, Washington Redskins, Senators/Nationals, and Cedar Rapids Kernels. From boyhood through adulthood, he always had a faithful canine companion by his side. Tom's sense of humor and clear insights enabled him to share his joy of living with his many friends, colleagues, and family.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to the
: https://act.alz.org and Gems of Hope Inc.: http://www.gemsofhope.com
Online condolences may be made to www.cedarmemorial.com.
Published in Des Moines Register on June 24, 2014