Thomas (“Yak”) W. Myers, 73, passed away peacefully in the early evening of February 18, 2022. Tom’s last hours were spent surrounded by his wife and two children, in his own home, in his own bed and listening to the sounds of his favorite Motown hits.
Born on May 13, 1948, in New Castle, PA, to Charles R. and Agnes "Chookie" Myers, Tom attended Union Area High School where he played football, basketball and baseball. After graduating in 1966, Tom attended Thiel College on a baseball grant where he was the starting outfielder during his freshman year before getting drafted into the U.S. Army. Tom finished basic training and returned home briefly to marry his soul mate, Mary Lee (Grossenbacher) Myers, before deploying to Vietnam in 1969. During the War, he was one of the fastest promoted infantrymen going from Private to Sargent in record time and after his tour, returning home safely in October 1970, with multiple medals and awards of accommodation and valor. Tom returned to New Castle and started work for Colonial Life Insurance Company, then Rockwell International before landing in what would become his long-term career as a counselor and labor union representative at the Youth Development Center (YDC) in Shenango Township.
An avid athlete and fan, Tom loved playing basketball, softball, bowling, golf and bocce with his close-knit group of friends across the New Castle, PA and Youngstown, OH areas. Tom was also an assistant varsity football coach at Mohawk Jr.-Sr. High School in Bessemer, PA from 1986 to 1987. He loved the Pittsburgh Steelers, Pirates, Penguins, and the Penn State Nittany Lions. Clint Eastwood, Roberto Clemente, and Franco Harris were his heroes and The Outlaw Josey Wales practically played on repeat in the home. He was not a self-proclaimed religious man but had likely read the Bible cover-to-cover more times than anyone you know. He loved the NY Times crossword puzzles, euchre and pinball. Loved a cold beer and his Thursday bowling league at Mohawk Lanes. He was a brilliant pool and ping-pong player – skills he mastered during his R&R time in Vietnam. He loved his family unconditionally, loved to read, travel, talk non-stop and grill steaks with friends and family.
In 2005, Tom was involved in a life-threatening traffic accident en route to New York City to attend his son’s graduation and while he beat all odds to survive the crash, Tom would be left with a traumatic brain injury that would change his life forever. Nevertheless, he never gave in to the daily battle of physical and mental anguish, memory loss and constant hospital visits. His wife of 52 years, Mary Lee never left his side over the next 17 years and retired early to care for Tom and to be the main reason he looked forward to each new day.
Survivors include his wife, Mary Lee Myers; two children: Wendy Waldron of Mentor, OH and Jeff Myers married to Natalie (White) Myers of Los Angeles, CA; two sisters: Nancy J. Myers of New Castle, PA, and Betty Fesmire married to Michael Fesmire of Sanborn, NY; one brother-in-law, Robert “Skip” Grossenbacher of Phoenix, AZ; four grandchildren: Luca Myers, Liam Waldron, Rocco Myers, and Leonardo Thomas Myers; and four nephews. He was preceded in death by both parents.
Family and friends will gather on Saturday, March 5, 2022, at the Fox Funeral Home 4700 Market St. Boardman, Ohio from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. with a service at 3:00 p.m. officiated by Minister Craig Smith Sr. followed by Military Honors, a Celebration of Life dinner will be in Bessemer, PA.
Memorial contributions may be made to A Special Wish Cleveland (www.aspecialwishcleveland.org) and The Move For Jenn Foundation (www.moveforjenn.org).
Arrangements have been entrusted to the Edward J. Fox & Sons Funeral Home 4700 Market St. Boardman, Ohio 44512.
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