Services
Iles Funeral Home - Westover Chapel
6337 Hickman Road
Des Moines, IA 50322
(515) 276-4567
Visitation
Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Iles Funeral Home - Westover Chapel
6337 Hickman Road
Des Moines, IA 50322
View Map
Celebration of Life
Following Services
Iles Funeral Home - Westover Chapel
6337 Hickman Road
Des Moines, IA 50322
View Map
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Tom Perry


1952 - 2019
Tom Perry Obituary
Tom Perry

Des Moines - Thomas Frederick Perry, a Renaissance man who loved family, friends and life, died on Aug. 10, 2019, at age 67.

Born in Bourne, Massachusetts, on July 9, 1952, Tom grew up in Taunton, Massachusetts, graduating from Taunton High School in 1970 and Bridgewater State College in 1974. He was a four-year football starter in high school, playing on the offensive and defensive lines, and a four-year starting guard and team captain in college. He was a member of the Associated Press All-New England team in 1973.

He was a journalist for 38 years, starting as a reporter at the Groton, Connecticut, News (1974-76); sports reporter, sports editor and assistant managing editor at the Norwich, Connecticut, Bulletin (1976-85); sports editor and local columnist at the Courier-News, Bridgewater, New Jersey (1985-97); features editor and local columnist, Green Bay, Wisconsin, Press-Gazette (1997-2004); and state editor and features writer, focusing on food, at the Des Moines Register (2005-12). He loved meeting people and telling their stories, and won state and national writing awards.

He enjoyed good conversation, often with a cigarette and drink in hand. He liked to read and write about history; to cook, especially Italian dishes and his signature paella; and to travel. He made many trips to Mexico, Italy, Ireland, Spain, Portugal and other international destinations. He had a gift for languages and for making friends wherever he lived or traveled.

He was preceded in death by his father, Manuel Nunes "Buck" Perry; his mother, Leona Bourque; and his brother, Jeffrey Perry. He is survived by his wife of 30 years, Carol Hunter; his brother, Michael Perry of Taunton; and sisters, Brenda (Bill) Finnigan of Taunton, and Donna (Steven) Parker of Fort Meade, Florida.

Tom and Carol owe special thanks to Tom's caregivers during his three years of debilitation, especially Robynn Gudbaur, and also Penny Scroggins, Crystal Kihanya and Paige Fisher.

Visitation will be at Iles Westover Chapel, 6337 Hickman Road, Des Moines, from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 18, with a 4 p.m. celebration of life immediately following.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the EMBARC refugee services organization or the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa.
Published in Des Moines Register on Aug. 15, 2019
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