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Thomas G Morris


1919 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Thomas G Morris Obituary
Thomas G. Morris age 96, long time Tucumcari resident passed away on March 4, 2016, in Amarillo,TX.
Surviving Tom is his son, Tommy; daughter in law, Regina; granddaughter, Jenna and his daughter, Elizabeth all of Tucumcari, NM. Also surviving is his sister, Lillie Pack of Mesquite, Tx; by four nieces and one nephew, Betty Elliott, Margaret Carathers, Sue Kay, Billie Jean Watson and Dale Pack.
He is preceded in death by his brother, Bill Morris: first wife, Corinne Stevens Morris; his sister, Dorothy Hubbell; and his second wife, Betty Bryant Morris; Betty's son Dr. Pat Bryant & wife Lynn and children, Christopher and Micheala also survive him.
Tom was born August 20, 1919, in the community of Carbon in Eastland County TX., to Nancy Smith Morris and Robert G. Morris. He attended Comanche High School in Comanche, TX. He joined the US Navy after high school and served as an enlisted man for two tours of duty beginning November 12, 1937, and ending March 22, 1944. After basic training, Tom was briefly assigned to the USS New Mexico in 1939 and 1940 he served aboard the USS Augusta, Flagship of the Asiatic Fleet. The August as cruise took him to the Philippines, Singapore, Siam (Thailand), French Indo China (Vietnam), Hong Kong and to numerous ports along the coast of China and Amoy (Xiamen) all the way to north of Chefoo (Yantai). His final assignment on his first tour was aboard the submarine, USS Sealion (SS195). He told his family he didn't mind submarine service because all his former assignments had been below deck anyway. In 2010 Tom recalled he was discharged the first time in November of 1941. He said he was waiting to catch the train from California back to Carlsbad NM where his mother and younger sister Dorothy then lived when the attack on Pearl Harbor came on December 7, 1941. His replacement on the Sealion as well as two of his buddies were killed when the Sealion was bombed at Cavite Naval yard in thePhilippines in December of 1941. The original Sealion was scuttled and a new Sealion (SS315) was commissioned in March of 1944. Tom went home to Carlsbad for a couple of weeks following the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the entry of the United States into World War II he reluctantly re-enlisted. Reluctantly he said, because he had witnessed first hand apparent superiority of the Japanese fleet while serving in the South Pacific. He was sent to Quincy , MA (Fore River Shipyard) and ultimately assigned to the light cruiser USS San Juan. Tom contracted Tuberculosis aboard the San Juan and spent his final months of service in the naval hospitals in San Francisco and Los Angeles.
Following his final discharge for the US Navy, he enrolled in the University of New Mexico on the G.I. Bill where he met Corinne Steven of Tucumcari. The couple married on June 5, 1947. Tom earned his B. S. degree in Civil Engineering from UNM in 1948. Following graduation, Tom and Connie moved to Tucumcari where Connie began her teaching career and Tom partnered with his mother in law, Ethelwyne Savage Stevens in the family farming and ranching business.
In January of 1953 he was elected the New Mexico House of Representatives and served continuously until December 31, 1958. He was elected to the 86th Congress of the United States on November 4, 1958 and served as a Representative at Large for New Mexico in the 87th, 88th 89th and 90th Congress until his defeat in November of 1968. Following his career in the US House he moved his family to Albuquerque, where he worked for the American Bank of Commerce. In 1972 he made an unsuccessful bid for the US Senate seat vacated by Clinton P. Anderson.
He moved his family back to Tucumcari and the farming and ranching enterprise in 1973. During the late 1980's and into the 1990's Tom worked for Gas Company of New Mexico as a lobbyist in Santa Fe. Following Connie's death in 1997 Tommy took over the reins of the family farming and ranching business and Tom retired. Tom married Betty Baker Bryant on September of 1998 and the couple made their home at Betty's house on South 5th street until her death in February of 2010. During this time, the couple enjoyed numerous shared interests including traveling, flower gardening and following the stock market.
Service celebrating his life will be conducted on Thursday morning March 10, 2016, at 10:30 AM in the First Presbyterian Church with Rev Amy Pospichal officiating. Interment will follow in the family plot of the Tucumcari Memorial Park Cemetery. Active pall bearers will be Phil Bidegain, Ron Wilmont, Warren Frost, Richard Randals, Dean Misseldine and Chris Sandoval. Honorary Pallbearers will be Phillip Bidegain, Dick Valdez, Howard Abercrombie, Jerry Morris, Tom Kay and Dale Pack.
The family suggests for those who wish, donations may be made to Amarillo Hospice of the Plains at 508 North Taylor, Amarillo TX, 79107 in lieu of flowers.
Arrangements entrusted to Dunn Funeral Home of Tucumcari NM.
Published in the Quay County Sun on Mar. 9, 2016
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