Thomas “Tom” Edgar Gibson, Jr., 78, passed away at his home on February 9, 2021, after a long illness. He was born in Temple on August 5, 1942, to Thomas E. and Laurine “Teen” (Twitty) Gibson, Sr. After graduating from Temple High School in 1960, Tom worked for the City of Temple before he went to work for the Santa Fe Memorial Hospital in 1968. He worked in the Physical Therapy Department, as an aide, for 34 years, until his early retirement in 2002. Tom loved all of his co-workers, especially Ray Rucker.
While at Santa Fe, he met his lifelong love and nurse-mate, Margaret Lillian “Cookie” Pechal, in January 1971. Being too shy to ask in person for a date, Tom called her at work and set up a time to go to Inner Space Cavern in Georgetown. They were married on May 22, 1971, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Temple.
Tom’s greatest passions, besides his family, were fishing and hunting for arrowheads. He and Harry Shafer had many digging trips to the Stillhouse Hollow site before it became the reservoir. He continued such ventures as long as he could with his brothers-in-law, Bill Wofford and Anton Pechal. At home, Tom loved planting flowers and having a large vegetable garden. He enjoyed being actively involved in all kinds of activities with his family, including SPJST, 4-H, church, school, and scouts.
Tom was a lifetime member of the Central Texas Sportman’s Club, where he helped build the fishing docks. He became a 3rd degree Knight in Council #3444 and a 4th degree Knight in Assembly #1138, where he enjoyed organizing the annual altar server’s swim event. Tom loved the Santa Fe Hospital and the railroad itself and always volunteered at the annual train festivals. He was a member of SPJST Lodge #47, Boy Scout Troop #152, Order of the Arrow, and St. Mary’s School PTC.
Tom is survived by his wife, Margaret of 49 years; a daughter, Laura Christine (Arden) Aylor of Alabama; two sons, Thomas Leroy and Daniel William (Lindsay) Gibson, both of Temple; one brother, William Twitty “Bill” (Rose) Gibson, of Rockport; four granddaughters, Grace, Madelyn, Mariana, and Emma; and three grandsons, Clayton, Jacob, and Henry.
Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Monday, February 15, 2021, at Hewett-Arney Funeral Home of Temple, with a private family rosary following. Funeral Mass will be at 2 p.m. Tuesday, February 16, 2021, at St. Mary’s Church with burial at Hillcrest Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 1018 South 7th, Temple, TX 76504. The family appreciates the care given by Dr. Michael Martin and also the BSW Hospice staff.