Thomas J. Higgins, Jr. On September 6, 2009, aged 87, Thomas J. Higgins, Jr., lifelong resident of San José, passed away after a short illness. Mr. Higgins leaves behind his wife and companion of 41 years, Sandra, daughter Vicki, grandson Joe (Dawn), great grand-daughter Jasmine all of San José, daughter Donna of Oregon, and four step-daughters. His son, Thom, predeceased him. A WWII veteran, he joined the RAF prior to Pearl Harbor and finished in the South Pacific with the American Air Force. After the war, Mr. Higgins joined the San José Fire Department working alongside his father. He retired as a District Chief after 25 years. He graduated in June 1950, from San José State College. He was an avid reader, world traveler, loved sailing, and was an active member of the YMCA until he took ill in August. His family is planning a private celebration of his life.
Published by San Jose Mercury News on Sep. 11, 2009.
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MEMORIES & CONDOLENCES
I am greatly saddened by the passing of Tom Higgins. My father, John Knapp worked with Chief Higgins. I can remember him when I was a little girl at the Market Street Firehouse. He was always good to me, my sister and mother. I am sure his passing has left a great void in your lives. My thoughts and prayers go out to your family. If my memory serves me right, he was also responsible for rescuing a wonderful friend of mine along with his wife and pastor from a capsized boat years ago outside the harbor close to Santa Cruz. May God Bless his soul......Patty Knapp-Steele
October 4, 2009
Tom was a great friend of handball at the SJ YMCA. He always helped donate when we needed funds for the Junior handball program. He played many of the great back in the day like Paul and Sam Haber. He always wanted to know who was playing well, and how was I playing. He enjoyed telling us about his sailboat. He loved a good workout and a cold beer. He was a great guy and he will be sorely missed at the Y. We thought the guy was immortal. He lives on in our memories. See ya Tom!
Mike Linnik Junior SJ Handball Coach National Handball Champion
September 23, 2009
I love you Tom. I am so grateful that we were able to spend time together before your sudden death. Thanks for all you have done for me and my family. I will miss you terribly but know I will see you again. I will continue to pray for our family and the shock of this great loss. Much Love and God Bless, Your step-daughter, Staci and family.
September 22, 2009
Dad,who am I going to call? I miss you so much. You were a sports hero,war hero and saved many fighting the fires. You always said when I asked you as an adult what is your advice...do not smoke and get a rocking chair,does wonders for your legs and circulation. My dad pressed 280 until almost 80 and was taken suddenly out of no where with twin lung and liver cancer at 88. He never smoked in his life . I just feel he went too fast but then again as a RN and ex Military,that is better then going slow. Love you dad, Donna Carland