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Thomas Jess Ashley


1932 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Thomas Jess Ashley Obituary
January 17, 1932 - July 4, 2017 Born in Los Angeles to immigrant parents, Douglas Ashley and Helen South; Thomas (Tom) attended South Gate High School before enrolling at Fresno State College as a scholarship football player. Upon graduating as a twenty year old, Tom enlisted in the Marine Corps, was stationed at Cherry Point, N.C., and reached the rank of 1st Lieutenant. Upon leaving the Marine Corps Tom returned to California to pursue and earn a Ph.D. at Claremont Graduate School. While raising a family that began in North Carolina Tom worked first as a professor at UCLA and then Orange State College/Fullerton State College (now CSUF). While at Orange State College Tom served as their first Tennis Coach. From that point on Tom led a remarkable life in the field of planning and land development; contributing to the land acquisition, planning and development of the EPCOT Center at Disney World in Florida, serving as Vice President of the Irvine Company, later conceiving of and realizing for Maui Land and Pineapple Company the resort of Kapalua in Hawaii, and many other developments throughout his private practice. Tom enjoyed travelling, outdoor activities such as skiing, tennis and sailing; but always had time to aid and assist others. He particularly enjoyed living on Maui, skiing in Sun Valley, and vacationing in Puerto Vallarta. After residing for most of the past 50 years in Orange County, CA, Tom moved closer to his son's family this past year in Marina del Rey. Tom is survived by: his first wife Janice; his children, twin siblings Peter and Cynthia (Lee); daughters Susan, and Karen (Braithwaite); twelve grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; and was preceded in death by his second wife Judilyn and great-grandchild Scott Braithwaite.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from July 29 to July 30, 2017
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