Friends, colleagues share memories of Thom
Veteran Gahanna Planning Commission member David Thom is being remembered for his service to the community.
Thom died Sept. 24. He was 67.
Thom was a longtime Gahanna resident who had served on various city commissions and boards for more than 27 years.
"Dave Thom truly loved this city he has called home most of his life," Mayor Becky Stinchcomb said. "His common-sense approach to challenges, deep knowledge and intuition of what was right for our city, and his great sense of humor is truly going to be missed. He has left a wonderful, indelible mark on this community and on the hearts of all of us who have been privileged enough to call him a friend. I miss him already."
Planning and zoning administrator Bonnie Gard barely could speak as she reminisced about Thom during the Sept. 25 commission meeting.
"Dave has been a good friend," she said. "He served on boards over 27 years, most of it volunteer, to make Gahanna a better place."
Commission member Kristin Rosan said she first met Thom when he was a councilman for her ward.
"My husband and I considered him a friend," she said. "Dave was unhappy when (wife) Patty passed from a long illness. He was a God-fearing man. We'll see him again but will miss him until that happens."
Commission member David Andrews said his father and brother had worked with Thom for many years.
"I think he talked my mom and dad into moving to Gahanna," Andrews said. "We'll miss him."
Thom was retired after 40 years in the HVAC industry in sales and marketing. He had just submitted a letter of resignation to the commission two weeks ago.
"My recent health conditions have forced me to make this deeply saddening decision," he wrote in a Sept. 11 resignation letter. "I hold many fond memories watching the growth of the city of Gahanna. I will mostly remember the development of the Stoneridge area, Creekside, Central Park and the Industrial Park, just to name a few. I am sincerely proud to have served with a superior group of people over the years. It truly has been a remarkable, gratifying and rewarding experience to have been a part of the development of a city in which I love -- the city of Gahanna."
He served on the Gahanna Planning Commission for 17 years, three years on Gahanna City Council, four years on the Board of Zoning Appeals and three years on the parks board.
Thom's funeral was Sept. 28 at Stonybrook United Methodist Church in Gahanna.
Contributions in Thom's memory may be made to the Gahanna Parks & Recreation Foundation, 200 S. Hamilton Road, Gahanna, 43230.
He is preceded in death by his wife of 40 years, Patty Thom, in 2011. He is survived by their son, Brian (Amy Brentlinger) Thom; daughter, Jennifer Thom; grandchildren, Laykin and Avarie, Tyler and Madison; sister, Teresa "Teri" Campbell; sisters-in-law, Mary Kay (Tom Sullivan) Peckham and Marlene (Richard) Pawlik; nieces and nephew, Jamie (John) Petree, Laura (Jason) Martin and Scott Campbell.