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Tom Downer

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Tom Downer Obituary
Tom Downer

Tom Downer passed away last Monday, August 20. He was 82 years old. The South Bay lost a dear friend and a loving pillar of our community. He was born in Boston, Massachusetts where he attended Tufts University. While there he co-founded the Tufts chapter of Sigma Nu fraternity and graduated with a degree in Political Science. After college he went on to serve in the US Army where he attended The Army Language School in Monterey, California. He subsequently served in the Counterintelligence Corps during the Korean War. After serving in the Army he took a civilian position at the Bureau of National Affairs in Washington D.C., where he worked as an editor. In 1963 Tom joined CBS Television as head of program practices. While working for CBS he moved to Manhattan Beach where he met his wife, Nancy Golden, a first grade teacher at La Marina Elementary School. In 1974 Tom and Nancy founded The Reading Center in Manhattan Beach where Tom served as president. While working at The Reading Center, Tom resumed his education and earned a Master's Degree in Education from Loyola Marymount University. He served as president of the Manhattan Beach Coordinating Council and volunteered his services for the Centinela Valley Juvenile Diversion Project. During his 32 years of leadership at The Reading Center, Tom's desire to serve his community was achieved through his continuing heartfelt work that touched the lives of countless students and families. He was grateful for these relationships that enriched his life. He loved the sea, dogs, his home, clever conversation, his friendships and most especially his beloved family. He maintained his gentle manner and his keen sense of humor to the very end. He passed away at home with his family at his side. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Nancy, their three children, Elizabeth, Matthew (and his wife Rebecca) and Luke (and his wife Nicole); three grandchildren, Adison, Thomas and Paige and his devoted dog, Bubbha. Services will be held at All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena on September 7th at 11:00 am. In lieu of flowers, please feel free to make a donation in Tom's name to the Torrance Memorial Hospice, 3330 Lomita Blvd., Torrance, Ca. 90505-5073. 310.784.3751
Published in Daily Breeze on Sept. 5, 2012
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