Page, Thomas Leslie, died on August 4, 2013, after a long illness. Tom was a fourth generation Kansan, born in Wichita on September 28, 1937 to Thomas Frederick Page and Mary Lucille O'Hara (both deceased). Tom grew up traveling North and South America in a military family. He lived longest in Wichita, but spent his last years in Manhattan, Kansas. Tom held political science degrees from Wichita State University and Vanderbilt University, as well as an MFA in creative writing from WSU. After his first degree from WSU, Tom's career began in the US Army Intelligence and Security Branch (Missile Command). Following an honorable discharge, he taught political science at the University of Florida, was influential in the creation of a multidisciplinary Latin American Data Bank, and was an organizer with the American Federation of Teachers (AFL-CIO) and the Veterans for Peace. During this time he met his lifelong partner, Leslie Ellen Fox (Page). The two married and had three children, Thomas O. Page (Wichita), Katie Kingery-Page (Manhattan), and Will A. Page (of Brooklyn, New York), to whom he was a dedicated mentor and inspiration. Tom devoted the latter half of his life to creating a large body of poetry, published internationally. In the 1970s he was a founding member of the Forum, a non-profit art and culture collective. He was a thoughtful man of many accomplishments: teacher, activist, labor historian, scholar of Midwestern literature, and poet; he was most proud of his children. Tom is survived by his wife and children; daughters through marriage, Jill Miller and Seher Khawaja; son through marriage, Lindsay Smith; granddaughters, Iris and Ruby; cousins, Francene Sharp and Marsha Brent (Wichita), Richard Wells (Andover), and Robert Page (Topeka); and loyal friends. The memorial celebration will be held Saturday, October 19, 2013, 5 p.m. at Watermark Books, 4701 East Douglas Ave., Wichita, Kansas.
Published in The Wichita Eagle on Aug. 11, 2013