Thomas L. "Tom" McHale Battle Creek Thomas L. "Tom" McHale, 85, died Monday, January 28, 2013, at Evergreen Senior Care. Thomas was born in New Orleans on May 3, 1927, the son of Edward J. and Loretta (Lamey) McHale, and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. Tom Served in the Naval Air Crew as a radio gunner in WWII. He attended the School of Drama and Radio in Cincinnati and attended Xavier University. Although he interned at two radio stations in Cincinnati, Tom considers his four years with WSOO in Sault Ste. Marie from 1952 until 1956, as his first real broadcasting job. He recalls that after the war he was working as a glass blower in a thermometer factory while furthering his education. He says one of the FM stations where he interned was heard on the city busses in Cincinnati. Since few people owned FM radios in those days, he says he would take the bus to hear the station. Tom worked at WKMF in Flint for one year from 1956 to 1957, before moving to Battle Creek in 1957, where he worked at WELL from 1957 to 1961. In 1961, Tom read his first newscast on WBCK, where he remained until his retirement in 2001 after 49 years of radio broadcasting. He spent 14 straight years in covering the Calhoun County Board of Supervisors/Commissioners with the former 41 member board and numerous years as the reporter for the Battle Creek City Commission, school boards and other governmental bodies. On January 8, 1949, Tom was united in marriage to his wife of 64 years, the former Evelyn C. Ranz who survives. Also surviving are children, Thomas (Joye) McHale, Tim McHale, Mike (Terri) McHale and Jim (Susan) McHale; 14 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren; brothers, Edward (Anne) McHale and Patrick (Geri) McHale; several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and a sister, Katherine Moorman. Tom was very active in the community. He and his wife and four other couples were co-founders of the Irish-American Club of Battle Creek. He served as emcee and as a member of Miss Cereal City and the Miss Battle Creek Pageant Committee. He is the former Vice President of the Calhoun County Chapter of the American Cancer Society, and served as a board member of the Huntington 's disease Association of Battle Creek. Tom also has been a member of the Battle Creek International Relations Committee, Master of Ceremonies for all Fort Custer National Cemetery Services and observances including the original Dedication of the Cemetery and emcee for the German Memorial Day for those German prisoners buried at Fort Custer. He was a member of the Leila Follies for almost 25 years, and was also involved with St. Philip Entertainment. He also was a member of the initial Visitors and Convention Committee of the Battle Creek Area Chamber of Commerce and is a former commentator and lecturer at St. Jerome Catholic Church and a current member of St. Joseph Catholic Church. Tom was a talented singer and entertainer, and previously had made numerous appearances at various nursing homes to provide entertainment. Visitation will be held Thursday from 2 to 4:00 p.m. and 6 to 8:00 p.m. at the Richard A. Henry Funeral Home. A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 1:00 p.m., Friday, February 1, 2013, at St. Joseph Catholic Church with The Very Rev. Mark J. Vyverman V.F. officiating. Interment with full military honors will be held at Fort Custer National Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Battle Creek Community Foundation. www.henryfuneralhome.org
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Published in Battle Creek Enquirer on Jan. 30, 2013