Thomas Lyle Wendover, age 72, passed away on Friday, November 6, 2020, at his home surrounded by family after a brief illness with lung cancer.
Tom was born May 2, 1948 in Lewiston, ID to Fred and Roena (Hill) Wendover. He grew up in the wheat country of Eastern Washington where he developed great athletic and leadership skills, a quick mind, and a solid work ethic. He ran a haying crew for a Whitman County agribusiness the summer he was 16, and was their top hand for the next several summers, even after his family moved to Whatcom County his senior year. Tom graduated from Meridian High School in 1966. He continued on with his education at Western Washington State College where he double majored in Sociology and Psychology, and graduated in 1971. Tom would later go on to earn his Master of Business Administration degree from City University, graduating in 1986. He did this while working fulltime at ARCO, an achievement he was very proud of. It was during his time at Western that he met the love of his life, Sally Holtcamp, at a dance on campus. They were married on September 26, 1970 in Sedro-Woolley and had two children, Stephanie born in 1974 and Geoffrey born in 1976.
In 1975, Tom was hired on at the ARCO Cherry Point Refinery (which later became BP) where he worked for 32 years, retiring in 2007 as an operations supervisor. During his time there he became a well respected leader and was recognized for his knowledge of the refinery, abilities as a trainer, and a person who always supported and stood up for his people. He was awarded a lifetime achievement award for his contributions.
When he wasn’t working Tom had three priorities: family, fishing, and golf.
In his early family years Tom enjoyed taking road trips around the USA with his wife and their children and made it a priority to visit family members along the way wherever they could. Maintaining close relationships with all of his extended family was very important to him. After retirement he enjoyed traveling with Sally around the world including trips to England, Europe, and Australia.
Tom also enjoyed fishing and looked forward to his annual trips to Critter Cove in Nootka Sound, B.C. The first trip was always with “the guys” a group of close friends that he made while working at ARCO. And the second trip was spent with a rotating mix of family and friends who were lucky enough to get invited that year. They always caught fish and had a good time!
When he wasn’t spending time with family, traveling, or fishing Tom loved to golf and was on the course every chance he got. He golfed every Wednesday and Sunday at Raspberry Ridge in Lynden with another group of close friends from his time at the refinery. He was proud to have hit a hole-in-one on the 12th hole of the Lake Padden Golf Course in 2015.
Tom was an honest man, hardworking, caring and compassionate, and very protective of his family, friends and things he cared about. He enjoyed talking with people and telling stories, and will be greatly missed by those who knew and loved him.
Tom is survived by his wife of 50 years, Sally (Holtcamp) Wendover; daughter Stephanie (Jamie) Osborn; son Geoff (Amber) Wendover; grandchildren Jake and Kylie Wendover, and Ellie and Thomas Osborn; brother Steve (Martha) Wendover; sister Rhonda Wendover Moore; and numerous nieces, nephews, extended family and many dear friends.
Unfortunately due to Covid there will not be a Celebration of Life. Instead, the family requests that you share your thoughts, memories, and pictures of Tom privately by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or in the Online Guestbook here. A private family graveside service will be held at Greenacres Memorial Park in Ferndale, WA.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Whatcom Hospice Foundation. The family was touched by the kindness and compassion that they gave to both Tom and his family while in their care.