Thomas P. Hanna
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Thomas P. Hanna

Former Ithaca resident Tom Hanna died on October 26, 2020, at age 79 in his home in Englewood, Florida, surrounded by his wife of 57 years, Kati, and the couple's children and grandchildren.

"Tom was a leader in the field of child abuse prevention and a past president of Prevent Child Abuse New York," wrote Dr. Vincent Palusci, a child protective pediatrician at NYU Langone Health. "He was loved by many and will be missed by all."

In the mid-1970s Tom was hired by Professor John Doris, then head of Cornell's Family Life Development Center, to share essential information about child abuse prevention with vulnerable communities.

Professor Doris, now deceased, recognized Tom's gift as a communicator and by hiring and valuing him, had a profound influence on his career and life, colleagues and family say.

"Tom helped us understand early on the potential of the Internet to connect child abuse prevention professionals so that they could share information and learn from each other," said John Eckenrode, now head of the renamed Bronfenbrenner center.

One project Hanna dedicated himself to involved helping prevent domestic and child abuse among U.S. military professionals and their families.

"Tom's knowledge and experience were critical in developing resource materials that emphasized resiliency, intervention, and prevention," recalls former project director Marney Thomas.

Tom also represented Ithaca's fourth ward on Common Council in 1994-97.

In addition, Tom, an avid golfer, was a driving force behind "Friends of Newman," which he helped form to ensure that Ithaca's Newman Municipal Golf Course would continue to flourish, says friend and fellow golfer Mark Babbage.

Tom was a talented poet as well, who helped the arts flourish in Ithaca, says fellow poet Peter Fortunato, who recalls helping him organize and get funding for innovative arts projects in the 1980s.

Survivors include Tom's wife, Kati Hanna; the couple's two children, Jennifer Kruegel-Hanna and her husband Gion-Men Kruegel of London, England, and Tim Hanna and his wife Melinda Slawson of Ithaca, N.Y.; his granddaughters Tahlia Hanna-Martinez, Serafina Kruegel-Hanna, and Ruby Wilson; as well as his many nieces, nephews, and in-laws.

Tom was pre-deceased by his mother Maisel Speck, father Michael R. Hanna, stepmother Kay R. Hanna and brothers Michael Hanna Jr., David Hanna and Anthony Hanna.

Donations in Tom's memory may be made to Namgyal Monastery, Ithaca N.Y.,, Prevent Child Abuse New York,, and First Tee,

Photo by Jon Reis

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Published in Ithaca Journal from Dec. 1 to Dec. 3, 2020.
Memories & Condolences
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4 entries
December 20, 2020
Tom, we met at a child abuse prevention conference, and found mutual interests right away. Although we only met in person a couple of times a year, we spoke fairly regularly on the phone. I miss your wit and insight and smile. Rest in peace.
Paul Click
December 3, 2020
Always enjoyed playing golf with Tom at Newman. We will miss him.
Jack Russell
December 3, 2020
Kati and family I am thinking of you during this profound time of loss. A loss to you and the greater community.
Deborah Dietrich
December 2, 2020
I was saddened to hear of Tom's passing & extend my condolences to his family. He was always such a nice person to be around and surely loved golf. We often talked about his brother, Dave & father, Mike, who I knew from way back. Newman won't be the same without Mike's friendly presence.
jim Atsedes
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