Last updated 12/23/2019 at 4:05pm | View PDF
Thomas William Wilson, 74, of Lisle, formerly of Hinsdale, passed away Dec. 14, 2019, at Amita Medical Center Hinsdale of complications of COPD.
Tom was born in Chicago in 1945 to Bill and Betty Wilson. The family moved to Hinsdale in 1950, and Tom attended Monroe School, Monroe Annex and Hinsdale Middle School. He was in the class of 1963 at Hinsdale Township High School, where he enjoyed playing bass fiddle in several jazz and blues groups. He was voted “Most Humorist” by his classmates and served as class social chairman, developing emcee skills that he later employed at class reunions.
Tom graduated from Culver-Stockton College in Missouri, where he hunted and fished whenever there was time. In college he was affectionately known as “Mr. Big Time” for being years ahead of his contemporaries, like drinking single malt scotch when friends were chugging beers. After college Tom joined the advertising firm J. Walter Thompson as an account manager. He later left with several other executives to form their own firm. After attending to his mother until her passing, Tom moved to New Hampshire and set up a marketing consulting firm. He moved on to Missouri after a few years to produce a trout fishing movie with a college friend.
On a visit back to Hinsdale in 2012, Tom suffered a severe stroke which paralyzed his right side, hindered his speech and left his confined to a wheelchair. His childhood friend, Scott Cordin, spread the word of Tom’s situation to his high school classmates, who responded with a fund to provide for his well being. Soon, birthday parties, Christmas parties and dinner parties at Eddie Merlot’s with friends became the norm. At his 50th high school reunion, Tom rolled himself up to the microphone and thanked his friends for their support, prompting a tearful standing ovation.
He is survived by his family and friends in the class of 1963.
A celebration of life party will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, at Eddie Merlot’s, 201 Bridewell Drive, Burr Ridge. Call (630) 468-2098 to RSVP.
Contributions in Tom’s name are appreciated to the Hinsdale Central Foundation, PO Box 296, Clarendon Hills, IL 60514.