Thomas P. Lam (1938 - 2018)

Obituary
  • "Dear Mr. Lam, I have memories of how wonderfully warm and..."
    - Okashi Robles
  • "Dear Mr. Lam, Thank you for your warm heart, kindness, big..."
    - Lara Hejtmanek
  • "Hey Grandpa I love you so much and you will always be with..."
    - Ethan Fry
  • "Tom was unequivocally the best friend a person could ask..."
    - Scott Scroggs
  • "I am deeply blessed to have known Tom, Dorcy, Olivia, and..."

1938 - 2018
A wonderful father, grandpa, brother, uncle, friend and successful entrepreneur-Thomas Poon Key Lam lived a vibrant 79 years and passed away on February 20th, 2018 from cardiac failure. Tom was the eldest son of Lam Bong Cheung and Ku Sau Fong, and spent his childhood in China and Hong Kong. Always independent and adventurous, Tom immigrated to the U.S. in 1958 with all of his worldly belongings in three suitcases and $300 to his name. He attended Chaffey College in CA where he worked his way through school and, importantly, met his wife and the mother of his two daughters, Dorcy Go. Recognizing that education would fuel his pursuit of the American Dream, Tom transferred to U.C. Berkeley in 1960, earning a degree in Business Administration, and married his sweetheart, Dorcy in June 1963. After graduation, Tom began his business career at Cal Life Insurance, but always wanted "to be his own boss" and pursued a career in real estate sales and subsequently became a successful general contractor, building dozens of lovely single family homes in the Bay Area. With his strong entrepreneurial drive, Tom also launched many successful small businesses as varied as a chain of one hour photo shops and a sizable senior citizen's residence. He cared deeply about his local community and was a member of the Rotary Club, Lake Merritt Breakfast Club and the Wat Sun Service Club.

Tom was born the son of a "third wife" in China and built a life in the U.S. that was the epitome of the American Dream. Moreover, everyone who knew Tom knew what a big heart and warm smile he commanded, and nothing made him smile wider than catching a big fish! He loved to fish and even owned several commercial fishing boats; fishing was his favorite pastime, which he enjoyed even in his final years, enabled by his devoted caregiver, Scott Scroggs. He was a man who lived life joyfully and was an eternal optimist with a huge laugh. He was just the best Dad and Grandpa. We will miss him so.

Tom is survived by his daughters Olivia and Rachel, his grandchildren Alexis and Ethan, his brothers David, Tony and Benson, and his sisters Edith, Cathy, Susan and Monita.

Services for Tom Lam will be held on March 17th, 2018 from 11:00AM-1:15PM at the Mountain View Cemetery in the Tower Chapel, 5000 Piedmont Ave., Oakland, CA. If sending flowers, please consider using www.fromtheheartflorists.com, (510) 986-1818, who are handling the floral arrangements for the March 17th service.
Published on NYTimes.com from Mar. 8 to Mar. 9, 2018
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