Thomas DeMoss Wood Our beloved son, Thomas DeMoss Wood was born in Houston on July 19, 1956. His parent are Betty Blount Seale Wood and Barry Payne Wood, M.D. In addition to being a native Houstonian, he was a sixth generation Texan and a great great grandson of Colonel Stephen William Blount who was a member of Sam Houston's Staff at the battle of San Jacinto, and was one of the fifty nine signers of the Texas Declaration of Independence in 1836.
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Tom attended St. John's school in Houston where he was an outstanding scholar. He was the winner of numerous awards and honors, including the coveted Brown University award for literature given to the most outstanding junior student in that field. He graduated as a National Merit Scholar and with high distinction. Tom then attended Stanford University where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and to Mensa and where he graduated summa cum laude. Following college he attended Yale University Law School where he earned a Juris Doctor degree. Besides his formal education he was a lifelong student and scholar with many varied interests and avocations. He was a dedicated and experienced traveler both in the U.S. and abroad with his family and with school groups. Blessed with a great sense of humor Tom was much loved by his family and friends. He had a strong interest in outdoor sports. During his early years in Houston he was a member of the Phill Hansel Swim Team and the St. John's School soccer team. He also enjoyed sailing and fishing at the family house in Galveston on the bay.
Following law school Tom spent two years of internship with Federal judges in Oregon and Washington state. He married Rachel Bradley of Berkley, California who was a fellow graduate of both Stanford University and Yale Law School. They established their home in Berkeley, high on a hill with a beautiful view of San Francisco, the bay and the Golden Gate Bridge. There they raised their family, two sons, Andrew Allan Wood and David Powell Wood. Both have followed in their parent's footsteps with outstanding scholastic records. The family enjoyed all the natural benefits that California has to offer, prolonged visits to the beautiful seashore, hiking and camping throughout all of northern California and especially extensive skiing trips to the Lake Tahoe area.
Tom practiced law in the San Francisco Bay area for thirty years. He joined the legal firm of McCutchen, Doyle in the early part of his career. Later he confined his practice to the appellate courts of the State of California.
He died in Berkeley on August 12, 2013 after a two year battle with malignant melanoma. Tom is survived by his beloved family; his wife, Rachel Bradley Wood; his sons, Andrew Allan Wood and wife Miki, and David Powell Wood and wife Courtney; his parents, Betty Blount Seale Wood and Barry Payne Wood, M.D.; his brothers Douglas Brian Wood and David Harrison Wood and wife Amy and Daughter Katherine Elizabeth; and by his uncle, John Harrison Seale.
A memorial service will be held in the Chapel of St. John the divine Episcopal Church, 2450 River Oaks Blvd on Friday, September 6, 2013 at eleven o'clock in the morning. The Reverend Laurens A. Hall will officiate.
Published in Houston Chronicle on Sept. 1, 2013