Tommy "Tom" Potter
1938 - 2021
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Tommy “Tom” Potter

Sept. 14, 1938 - Jan. 8, 2021


Tommy “Tom” Potter, 82, residing in Granger, passed away at 1:28AM Friday, January 8, 2021 at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center.

He was born September 14, 1938 in Crossville, TN to the late Virgil and Bertie (Walker) Potter.

On July 30, 1956 in South Bend, Tom married his high school sweetheart, Donna Freel, who survives. They resided in Granger.

He proudly owned and operated Potter's Mobil from 1960-2001. When not working, he took pride in keeping up with his property and loved spending time at his pool. Tom was a natural socializer who never met a stranger, and shared his zest for life with all he met. After retirement, you could find him at Notre Dame football games, spending time at the casino, and in Naples, FL. Tom had immense pride for each of his grandchildren, and loved bringing them together.

Tom was preceded in death by his two brothers, Winston Potter and James Potter, and his son, Thomas Potter.

In addition to his loving wife of 64 years, Tom is survived by his two sisters, Jean Potter and Wilda Knipple; his son, Tim (Mary) Potter of South Bend, and daughter, Diane Johnston of Granger. Tom also cherished every moment with his seven grandchildren, James (Melissa) Potter of Chicago, IL, Scott Potter of South Bend, Alexandra Johnston of Minneapolis, MN, Elizabeth (Philip) Yatvin of Chicago, IL, Michael (Jaycie) Potter of Virginia Beach, VA, Michelle (Kyle) Peterson of Indianapolis, IN, and Matthew Potter of South Bend, IN; and great-grandchild, Elias “Truck” Peterson of Indianapolis, IN.

Out of an abundance of caution, and care for the health of our surviving family, you are encouraged to share a memory, or leave an online condolence at

Expressions of sympathy in memory of Tom may be donated to Center for Hospice Care, 501 Comfort Pl., Mishawaka, IN 46545.

HANLEY and Sons Funeral Home “Southwest Chapel” and Cremation Services handled arrangements and extends its deepest sympathy and heartfelt prayers to Tom's family and friends.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in South Bend Tribune on Jan. 12, 2021.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by Hanley and Sons Funeral Home - South Bend Southwest Chapel
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9 entries
January 16, 2021
Everything said in his obit is true. I worked for Tom in the 60's and boy did
we have fun. He always called me "P". Seldom ever saw him angry.
He went over and above to help everyone. About ten years ago I returned a long forgotten key to the front door. I threw the key on the counter and said "I quit!". He looked at me and smiled and said
"you can't quit; you have to work tonight" After driving all the way
from Colorado; I would have done it. That was Tom Potter!
Paul Ostrom
January 14, 2021
My heartfelt condolences to Tom’s family! He was truly the best! May peace be with you all! Looking back through the years his generosity and concern for members of our community is humbling...
Kathryn Call-Kapusta
January 13, 2021
Prayers to the family. I worked for Tom from 72 through late 73. I always knew that even after I left I could always stop if I was having trouble with my car and he Bud or Ron would have the answer. A great Boss, and Friend.
Russ Cuthbert
January 12, 2021
Tom was always so much fun during times I babysat for Tommy and Timmy. I remember the rotten crab apple fight from the tree in the backyard. Tom and Donna played the album the first time I heard Sonny & Cher and the Mamas and the Papas. Tom used to tease his sister-in-law, Vicki, and I every chance he had when we were little. I have lived many years away from South Bend, but cherish the family memories.
Suzanne Vanarsdall
January 12, 2021
I met Tom through a great friend of mine. Joe Klaybor. I remember those Fiday nights with Tom, Tony, and Joe down at the station like it was yesterday. I just remember Tom being such a great guy that always treated me so kindly. RIP my friend. John Hermanek.
John Hermanek
January 12, 2021
Mrs. Potter, Diane, Mary, Tim and all the kids- Ed and I are so sorry for your family’s loss. May Tom Rest In Peace.
Gloria McFadden
January 12, 2021
My deepest sympathies for the loss of a wonderful man. I grew up on Brick Rd and Tom Potter was just always part of life. Mom and Dad getting gas. Us kids walking to the station for a candy bar. Later on stopping and getting cigarettes from the machine. He also employed my Cousin Ron Hardy for many years. RIP Tom, Thank you for such fond childhood memories. You'll be remembered always
Jeanne Lanthier
January 12, 2021
My dad James Mcgalliard was a friend. I went to school with his sons. I am so sorry for your loss. Tim i will be praying for you and your family
Paula Mcgalliard Reighard
January 12, 2021
My deepest sympathies to all of the Potter family.
Barry Becker
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