Thomas Joseph Good
07/13/1958 - 08/14/2021
Obituary For Thomas Joseph Good
Thomas Joseph Good left this earth and began a new journey August 14, 2021. He was born July 13, 1958 in Oregon, OH, to Charles Thomas Good and Vena Katherine Estep, and grew up in Monroe, MI. He had a wonderful childhood, growing up a ‘Manor Kid’ where he made many lifelong friendships. He was a Boy Scout, had a paper route, and was in the Order of Demolay. He loved hunting in Tawas with his dad, brother and his ‘hunting family’ which continued until the move to NC. He was a good student and loved learning. Reading was his passion and he read the Encyclopedia Britannica cover to cover twice! Both of his parents had large families, so many fun times were spent with cousins, aunts & uncles. He had many wonderful memories of those times.
He always loved cars and upon turning 15, he bought his first Mopar, a ’69 Roadrunner. It was the first, but wouldn’t be the last as he bought and restored many more over the years. He could list every option available on any Mopar muscle car for the mid 60’s to 70’s and rarely was he wrong. He had many jobs as a teen and young adult, gas station attendant, assembly line for Chrysler, and real estate agent. That’s when he met his wife Debbie, they were trying to sell the same guy a house. The guy never bought the house, but Tom and Debbie hit it off. They got married and soon a baby was on the way, but with the real estate market stuck in a recession, Tom took a job at North Star Steel and became a millwright. During his time at North Star, he was part of the first effort to organize a union. He also attended Henry Ford College at night and obtained his Associates Degree. Tom and Debbie spent many happy years in Monroe restoring an old Victorian while raising their daughter, Rachael. In 1992, they got the bug to move to NC, so they sold a couple of cars, the Victorian and took the leap. He took a couple of years off and remodeled the home they bought in NC, then went to work at Ecusta Paper Mill until it closed. He walked the picket line and was instrumental in getting TRA funds for workers when he found out it hadn’t been done. When the plant closed, he went back to college for accounting at Western Carolina. He never missed the Dean’s List and graduated Magna Cum Laude. He and his daughter graduated college the same year, showcasing his lifetime love of learning which he had instilled in his family. His first job as an accountant was as an auditor for the State, he was next hired as controller for Blue Ridge Community College, then Director of Finance for Henderson County Habitat for Humanity. His final job was for the Asheville Housing Authority as the Finance Director.
Tom was a very easy going person, always up for an adventure or live music. He was very slow to anger and quick to forgive. He was incredibly positive especially during his fight with cancer. He loved to meet new people. His family knew to never send him into a store if you were in a hurry. He would come out and tell you the most amazing stories about someone he met there. He loved to laugh and was very witty. Monty Python and Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy were often quoted. A password for one of his doctor’s was Dr. Bombay, he was a very witty guy. He believed in helping his fellow humans and treating all fairly. As a teen, he and his brother John filled sandbags for the Red Cross when floods would come. He continued to support them by giving his universal blood type every chance he could until his illness required him to stop. He could fix anything, his analytical mind would always find a solution. A favorite family saying was ‘Daddy can fix it’. He had a strong work ethic, rarely did he miss work or school. He loved animals and children and they loved him back. He was passionate about music, books, and baseball, his team was the Detroit Tigers. He was always up for sharing his knowledge and love about those things to anyone that was interested. He was a wonderful son, brother, husband, father, uncle. One of his favorite names was TT, the name his granddaughters knew him by.
Tom is survived by his wife Debbie, daughter Rachael (Liz) Selby and husband Don, 2 granddaughters, Piper and Riley. Mother Vena Good, sister Cindy Norris, brother John Good and wife Margarita, mother & father- in-law, Jolene & Herb Wolff, sister and brother-in-law Kathy & Bill Sutherland, brother-in-law Richard Sanders, step-mom Becky Kincade Good, step mother in law Lois Sutherland, in addition to numerous aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his father Tom (Chuck), father-in-law William Sutherland and brother-in-law Jeff Norris.
He requested a celebration instead of a funeral. Next year, we will be hosting his grand party with a Second line band, Hawaiian shirts, his favorite foods, music and what he treasured most-friends and family. We will be sure to give everyone enough notice to celebrate Tom’s life. To anyone wishing to donate in Tom’s name, may we suggest WNCW radio (wncw.org), (Tom manned the phones twice a year for their fund drive) or Teach Rock (teachrock.org) a curriculum that uses music to reach students. To know that he had some small part in helping someone discover their potential through reading, or their love of music, would truly make him smile. We also ask that you honor him by doing an act of kindness in his name. While his absence will leave a huge space, he will live forever in our hearts and minds with the example of a life well lived.