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Robert T. (Tom) Williams

January 22, 1947 June 17, 2019
Robert T. (Tom) Williams
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Obituary for Robert T. (Tom) Williams

Robert Thomas (Tom) Williams was born January 22, 1947, in Clarinda, Iowa, the son of Robert T. (Bob) Williams and Jean (Yance) Williams. He grew up attending school in Clarinda, where he was on the Swim Team graduating with the Class of 1965. Tom enjoyed being a life guard at the Clarinda Pool for many years. After high school, Tom attended Clarinda IWCC College for one year, then he spent one year attending an Electronics Trade School in Omaha, Nebraska. He entered the United States Army in September of 1967, serving 3 years. He attended Basic Training at Fort Campbell, Kentucky; then AIT in Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. At Fort Monmouth he was trained to be a Microwave Radio Repairman and was a Life Guard at the Base's pool. He spent 18 months in Germany on the tallest mountain in the Black Forest (Feldberg) at a microwave radio site. He arrived in Vietnam on New Year's Day in 1970 and was stationed on Monkey Mountain, another microwave radio site outside of Da Nang for 8 months. He received his Honorable Discharge as a Specialist 5th Class in September of 1970. Upon his discharge, he returned to Clarinda and went to work for GTE (General Telephone Electronics), taking an early retirement in 1998, as a Switchman.

On July 31, 1989, he was united in marriage to Karla K. Wheeler in Estes Park, Colorado. He became a father to Karla's son, Billy and the couple were blessed with the birth of a son, Jerard and a daughter, Kristin. After his retirement from GTE, he delivered parts for Carquest Auto Parts in Clarinda for the next 10 years. While the kids were growing up, the family enjoyed camping near Estes Park, Colorado for 11 years, vacationing at Osage Beach, Lake of the Ozarks until 2005. Tom enjoyed being a Ham Radio Operator (WBØJMV) for over 46 years, teaching Karla the trade (KBØNVY), she has enjoyed Ham Radio for over 25 years. Karla retired from NSK in June of 2013, and together they have enjoyed spending time on their acreage near Clarinda, traveling to the Des Moines area to visit their children and grandchildren. They also traveled to California to visit relatives and enjoyed the last five years wintering as snowbirds in Arizona, where they ATV'd in the desert and mountains near Arizona City. Their future plans were to split their time between Clarinda, their kids, grandkids and Arizona.

Left to cherish the memories of a wonderful husband, father, grandfather and brother is his loving wife Karla Williams of Clarinda, Iowa; step-son, Billy Williams and wife Cindy of Bedford, Iowa and their children, Payton, William and Sara; a son, Jerard Williams and wife Rachel of Urbandale, Iowa; and a daughter, Kristin Sunderman and husband Derek of Van Meter, Iowa and their children, Beck and Ace; a sister, Barbara Herzberg and husband Duane of Clarinda, Iowa; two brothers, Mike Williams and wife Renee of Clarinda, Iowa; and Steve Williams and wife Renae of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania; a sister-in-law, Deb Williams of Clarinda; along with many nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.

Preceding Tom in death are his parents, Bob and Jean Williams; a brother, Richard Williams and his in-laws, Norval and Helen Wheeler.

We will forever hold the precious memories of Tom in our hearts.
May he be at peace in God’s loving care.

Previous Events

Interment with Military Honors




2:00 PM 8/16/2019 2:00:00 PM
Iowa Veterans Cemetery

34024 Veterans Drive
Adel, Iowa 50003

Iowa Veterans Cemetery
34024 Veterans Drive Adel 50003 Iowa
United States

Memorial Contribution

May be given in his name.


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