Thomas Horn (1930 - 2014)

  • "In memory of Tom Horn. One huge heart one great soul. A..."
    - Maria Keller
  • "Time to say farewell to another old pal, Tom Horn. Tom..."
    - Warren Wiley
  • "Many fond memories of Tommy when I was growing up. One of..."
    - Ron Ciraulo
  • "I enjoyed getting to know your Dad on my visits at JPH to..."
    - Sylvia Pedersen
  • "Daddy, I miss you more than anything. These last two years..."
    - Debbie Horn Grundmann

Thomas Horn
83 years
October 31, 1930 – February 8, 2014
Juneau, Alaska

The life of Thomas Horn was the ultimate Alaska reality show. He served in the military and law enforcement; worked in the maritime industry, construction, aviation, mining, and fishing; enjoyed hiking, hunting, ranching, and camping; but was – most importantly – a loving papa to his children and grandchildren.
Thomas was born in Plummerville Arkansas on October 31st, 1930 to Drew and Clara Horn. He quickly learned the harsh realities of life following the premature death of his mother, and, at the age of seven, went to live with his aunt Wilma Jenkins in Juneau, Alaska, in the early pioneering days long before statehood. Arrived in Juneau, Alaska May 31, 1937.
He went on to attend Capitol School in Juneau and joined the military upon graduation. After serving his country for several years in the army, Thomas began a career in law enforcement with the Juneau Police Department. Soon after, he met the beautiful Barbara Shanks, who worked as the popcorn girl at the Capital Theater. After her graduation from Juneau Douglas High in 1955 the two married and had four wonderful children – Deborah, Kimberly, Thomas, and Dianne.
Thomas continued his career in law enforcement as a detective into the 1950s, but later tried his hand as a pilot for Alaska Coastal Ellis Airlines. He took full advantage of his small planes by flying his children back and forth between many lakes in S.E. Alaska to fish and enjoy the outdoors much to their delight. He owned and was partner in a number of small airline carriers in Juneau serving S.E. Alaska including Capitol Air, Southeast Skyways and finally "Wings of Alaska."

Before there had been any major development in Juneau, Thomas founded the Helin, Horn and Shanks gravel and development company. He was a true pioneer in the region and contributed greatly to modern Juneau. He and his father-in law Jesse Shanks development one subdivision in particular devoted to his children- Sunset Acres Subdivision in Juneau where the streets are named for each of his children, Kimberly Street, Deborah Drive, Diane Rd. and Mitchell Way.

He served the Community of Juneau in the 1960's as a Juneau Assemblyman.
But Thomas was never one for idleness – in the following decades, he graduated from officer candidate school at Fort Benning Georgia as a Major in the Army, and played a central role in bringing the National Guard to Juneau. He was a graduate of the US Advanced Officers training, US Army fixed wing and helicopter school. During the 1964 earthquake he was in Anchorage, AK and served as the commanding officer of the most northern National Guard unit in Alaska.
Thomas was a man of God and was raised as a Baptist, but Auke Bay Bible Church was known as his church home in Juneau. He loved music and singing with his family. He was gifted in playing the guitar, banjo and harmonica.
His fingerprints of development, air service, military service are seen all around the state. He will be remembered by Juneanites, and Alaskans in general, for his incredible contributions to the state, but by his family and friends as a loving father and thoughtful friend with a huge kind, giving and loving heart. It can be truly said that Thomas lived a life as full and eventful as any man could hope for.
He is survived by his children Deborah Grundmann, Kimberly Horn, Thomas Mitchell Horn, his six wonderful grandchildren – Alexander Grundmann, Alexis Grundmann, Ryan Mitchell Martin Ashley Horn, Jesse Horn, Braeden Horn and only great grand son – Ayden Martin; his first wife, mother of his children and love of his life, Barbara Shanks-Sanford and his cousins that he grew up with like brothers, Henry Allen and Gary Jenkins and their families.

He was preceded in death by his Aunt Wilma and Henry Jenkins who raised him, his brother Gerald Horn, sister Jean Horn and his darling daughter Dianne Marie Horn.
Requiescat in Pace
Family contact:
Kim Horn
PO BOX 33472
Juneau, Alaska 99803
Burial arrangements are being made by family and will be announced at a later date. Military honors with friends and family will be held Alaskan Memorial Park and Mortuary Juneau Alaska.
Funeral Home
Alaskan Memorial Park and Mortuary
3839 Riverside Drive
Juneau, AK 99801
Published in The Juneau Empire on Feb. 26, 2014
Funeral Home Details