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Thomas Van Dyke King


1924 - 2015 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Thomas Van Dyke King Obituary
KING Thomas Van Dyke King, prominent real estate executive and civic leader died today, Thursday, November 12, 2015 at the age of 91. Mr. King, who was a resident of Chicago for over 50 years, lived on Amelia Island, Florida for the past 17 years. He was Chairman and CEO of Seay & Thomas, Inc., a Chicago commercial real estate firm founded in 1935, Chairman of Amelia Development Company, and also served as Chairman of the Board for the U.S. operations of Matra Transit, Inc., a conglomerate that constructed the people mover at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. Mr. King was associated with the Merchandise Mart Properties in Chicago for 28 years including 11 years as President of the Mart Centers. Born in Cincinnati, Ohio on March 9, 1924, he was the son of the late Thomas H. and Lula Van Dyke King. He attended Michigan State University and received his degree from the University of Michigan where he achieved All American honors as a member of the Michigan basketball team. He won Varsity Letters in basketball and baseball at both universities. He volunteered for the U.S. Marine Corps. and served in World War II and Korea. He was discharged as a Captain. Mr. King played for the Detroit Falcons in the National Basketball Association before joining Arthur M. Wirtz Enterprises, for whom he was employed before joining the Merchandise Mart. Mr. King's active involvement in numerous civic activities gained him many honors during his years in Chicago. He served as Chairman of the Better Business Bureau of Metropolitan Chicago, Chairman of the Chicago Convention and Visitors Bureau, President of the Board of Directors of Mercy Hospital and President of United Cerebral Palsy of Chicago. He was a past Trustee of John Marshall Law School, Mundelein College, the Evans Scholars Foundation, and the PGA of America Foundation. Among his business affiliations, Mr. King served as a member of the Board of Directors of the PHH Group (New York Stock Exchange) and as a past board member of the Chicago Board of Trade and Mid-America Commodity Exchange. He served on the Board of Directors of the PGA of America, as a Senior Consultant to Hill and Knowlton, Inc. and as a special consultant to the multi-billion dollar Central Station project. Mr. King was recognized in the Chicago community as one of the most dedicated civic servants and, over the years, he participated actively in leadership roles with the National Conference of Christians and Jews, The March of Dimes, Chicago Baseball Cancer Charities, Variety Club of Chicago, Chicago Central Area Committee, Chicago Foundation for the Public Education, Special Olympics and The Center for Ethics and Corporate Policy. His club affiliations in Chicago included the Casino Club, the International Club, the Evanston Golf Club, the 410 Club, the Monroe Club, and the Tavern Club. He was also a member of the Empire Club of Canada and the Golf Club of Amelia Island and the Ocean Club of Amelia Island in Florida. In his 70s, King formed an orchestra The Royal Chicagoans which recorded 10 CD (Volumes I through XI of One More Time) with rave reviews. Featuring classical jazz, he played the drums and arranged the scores. He moved to Amelia Island in the 1990s where he and his wife made his new home. After settling here, they were instrumental in the founding and vision for Holy Trinity Anglican Church of Fernandina Beach. Mr. King is preceded in death by his wife, Barbara Ann Scott, former Olympic figure skating champion, who died on September 30, 2012. He leaves behind his son, Thomas Van Dyke King Jr., Winston-Salem, NC, his daughter, Shelley Jean Singleton and her husband, Frank, of Franklin, TN, three grandchildren and four great grandchildren.. His family will receive friends on Sunday from 1:00 o'clock pm - 3:00 o'clock pm at Oxley Heard. Funeral services will be at 11:00 am on Monday from the graveside in Bosque Bello Cemetery in Fernandina Beach with Bishop Walter Grundorf and the Reverend Father Brad Cunningham, officiating. Mr. King will be laid to rest beside his wife. Floral tributes are gratefully appreciated or memorial contributions may be made to Holy Trinity Anglican Church, 1830 Lake Park Drive, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034. Please share his Life Legacy and leave your memories and condolences at www.oxleyheard.com OXLEY - HEARD FUNERAL DIRECTORS
Published in the Florida Times-Union on Nov. 13, 2015
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