CORRAL?DE?TIERRA – Thomas "Tom" Lloyd Hitchcock passed away at home with his wife by his side on January 12, 2014. Tom was born on July 25, 1927 to parents, Milton and Louise Nissen Hitchcock.|
Tom graduated from Salinas High in June of 1945, where he excelled in all sports. Upon graduation he was drafted into the Army Artillery Division at the end of WWII. After his service, he attended UC Davis, where he was President of the Calpha's fraternity and graduated in 1951 with a Bachelor of Science in Animal Husbandry.
Following graduation from UCD Tom worked as cowboy for his uncle, Jim Bardin and then for Kai Silacci on their cattle ranches. Then in 1955 he went to work for his father at Hitchcock Packing Co. along with his brothers.
In 1955 he met and then later married Geraldine Anne Gall of Stockton on December 16, 1956.
Upon the death of his father, he started a new company with partners and brothers, Let-Us-Pak; it was started in December 1969, and he also created another new company, Produce City Inc., which was a marketing company for Let-Us-Pak and other growers. He retired as an executive in the produce industry in the mid-90s. He was a member of the Elks Lodge, Corral de Tierra Country Club, Salinas Golf and Country Club, Barbara Worth Country Club, Grower Shipper Association, Iceberg Lettuce Research Association, and he was President of Independent Living for the Handicapped.
His hobbies and passions included golf, hunting, fishing, and gardening. He also enjoyed hanging out at the Elk's Lodge, either playing cards, rolling dice, and yes, having a cocktail with the boys.
Tom was preceded in death by his parents, Milton and Louise; older brother, Mitt; along with many aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends.
He is survived by his loving wife of 57 years, Gerry; sons, Christopher of Corral de Tierra, Patrick and Pete, both from Del Rey Oaks; brother, Budd (Leah) from Salinas; granddaughter, Jessica Zobel (Clinton); step-grandchildren, Dominic Sampaolo and Janelle Smith; two great grandchildren and five step-great grandchildren; along with numerous cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.
Visitation and viewing will be held Wednesday, January 15, 2014 from 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Struve and Laporte Chapel, 41 W. San Luis St., Salinas, CA 93901.
A Celebration of Life will be held Friday, January 17, 2014 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Salinas Elks Lodge, 614 Airport Blvd., Salinas, CA 93905. We look forward to singing one last "Honskalava" for Tom.
Memorial donations may be sent to the Hospice of the Central Coast,
, The United Cerebral Palsy Association, or the donor's favorite charity.
The family wishes to extend their great appreciation and thanks to our caregivers, Patty Carmona, Lupe Guerrero, Dr. Alejandro Centurion, Dr. William Lewis, and the Hospice Staff of the Central Coast.
Funeral arrangements are by Struve and Laporte Funeral Home. For more information and to share a memory, visit: www.struveandlaporte.com.
Published in The Monterey Herald on Jan. 15, 2014