Cover photo for Tom Clark's Obituary
1931 Tom 2018

Tom Clark

September 6, 1931 — May 29, 2018

A memorial service for Tom Clark, 86, of Spirit Lake will be held at the Epworth Hall Chapel at the United Methodist Camp in Monarch Cove in Spirit Lake on Saturday, June 2at 11:00 AM. A luncheon reception will follow. John Thomas Clark, 86, died peacefully Tuesday, May 29th at Spirit Lake hospital. He was born September 6, 1931 in Sergeant Bluff along with his identical twin Charles Gerald Clark. Tom and Jerry, as they were known, were two of nine children to Russell and Edine (Murphy) Clark and graduated from Sergeant Bluff High School in 1948. Jerry joined the Marine Corps, so Tom did too. The two were stationed at Camp Fuji in Japan during the Korean War. He married Janice Mae Rasmussen on October 14, 1951 at Morningside Lutheran Church in Sioux City. The two had five children who all grew up on Shields Avenue in Sioux City and attended Longfellow Elementary, East Junior (East Middle), and East High School, just as their mother had. All five went on to become college graduates. Tom enjoyed raising tomatoes, sweet corn, muskmelon, and watermelon at an acreage on the Missouri River south of the airport that family and friends knew as "The Ponderosa." He loved sharing the Ponderosa with others, including large Sunday picnics, and was well known to leave fresh produce on the stoops of many family and friends on his way home from the Ponderosa. He also enjoyed coaxing life out of his John Deere tractor and dozens of second-hand lawn mowers. He graduated from Sioux City Barber College and was a barber for 20 years with his own shop in Sergeant Bluff. Later, he was a real estate agent, a laborer in the meat packing industry, and a custodian at Leeds Elementary and West High Schools. Tom had the gift of gab - he was first and foremost a conversationalist whose kind nature was plain to all who met him. Tom and Janice retired to Monarch Cove in Spirit Lake, IA in 1998. He is survived by his wife Janice, children Catherine (Pat) Kelly of Spirit Lake, IA, Linda Clark of Lawrence, KS, Diane (Dan) Tjaden of Dakota Dunes, SD, Karen Clark of Spirit Lake, IA, and Jonathan (Katherine) Clark of Washington, DC., grandchildren Jack, Ben, and Katie Kelly and Camren Tjaden, and siblings Jerry Clark of Garden Grove, CA, and Lorraine Houlihan of Atlanta, GA.
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