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Thomas Gresham

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Thomas Gresham Obituary
THOMAS AUSTIN GRESHAM

SHREVEPORT, LA - Graveside services for Thomas Austin Gresham will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, August 1, 2015 at Greenwood Cemetery. Officiating will be Rev. William A. Nolan. Tom passed away on July 30, 2015 after a sudden illness.

He was born March 31, 1921 in Buenos Aires, Argentina to Vernet Lamar and Christine Long Gresham. He attended private school in Buenos Aires and public schools in Jackson, TN and Crowley, LA and graduated from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA in 1946.

He served in WWII as a First Lieutenant with the 8th Air Force in England as lead navigator in B-17 bombers and was awarded the Air Medal with two Oak Leaf clusters for 20 combat missions over Germany.

After graduation from LSU he was employed by Esso refinery in Baton Rouge, later moving to Lake Charles, LA to open radio station KLOU. He was also manager and part owner of radio station KAOK in Lake Charles from 1948 to 1959, when he moved to Shreveport as an associate of the late T.B. Lanford, managing radio station KRMD. He was executor of T.B. Lanford Estate from 1978 until his retirement in 1988. He was president of Bayou Reproductions in Lafayette, LA and on the board of directors of Coastal Log Company in New Orleans.

Tom served on the Caddo Draft Board in 1967-68. He was a graduate of the College for Financial Planning, Denver, CO and notary public. He served as president of Gamma Chapter of Kappa Sigma fraternity at LSU, president and Paul Harris Fellow of both the Lake Charles and Downtown Shreveport Rotary Clubs, two-term president of the Shreveport Bridge Association and was a Life Master and certified director in the American Contract Bridge League.

Tom's hobbies included tennis, golf, duplicate bridge, and after his retirement, lecturing and directing bridge on cruise ships, and world-wide travel with his wife of 67 years, Joan.

He was predeceased by his parents, a brother, Vernet Lamar Gresham of Washington, D.C. and Lafayette, LA and sisters Alice Christine Gresham Guidroz of New Orleans and Lucille Gresham Raymond of Lafayette, LA. Survived by his wife of 67 years, the former Joan Virginia Yarbrough; three children, Christine Gresham Hightower and husband, Steve of Folsom, LA, Joan Elizabeth "Betsy" Gresham Andrus and husband, Mark of Lafayette, LA and son, John Lamar Gresham of Shreveport, LA; three grandchildren, Paul Gresham Hightower of New Orleans, Scott Morgan Andrus and Christine Marshall Andrus of Lafayette, LA.

In lieu of flowers memorial may be made to The Shreveport Bridge Association, 7625 E. Kings Highway, Shreveport, LA 71115 or to the charity of donor's choice.

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Published in Shreveport Times on Aug. 1, 2015
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