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Thomas Carrico

Thomas Carrico, age 80 of Belvidere, SD, died Monday, November 16, 2009, at his residence in Belvidere.

Mass of Christian burial was celebrated Monday, November 23, at Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church in Kadoka, with Father Bryan Sorensen as celebrant.

Music was provided by JoAnne Stilwell. Ushers were Joe Leutenegger and John Rodgers. Pallbearers were Tracy, Mark and Todd Owens, Brenda M. Obil, Michael D. and Robert E. Childers.

Interment with military honors by the American Legion Post #27 of Kadoka, was in the Belvidere Cemetery.

Thomas Wesley Carrico was born Saturday, December 29, 1928, and died November 16, 2009, six weeks shy of his 81st birthday. Tom was born in Belvidere, where he attended the Belvidere Public School, graduating as the only member of his class. Tom was the oldest of four children born to J. Otto and Ann Carrico. Phyllis (Owens), Otha (Buck) and Keith were to follow. He was baptized and attended Holy Mass at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Belvidere.

Tom played baseball and basketball for Belvidere, and one year the baseball team went to the state tournament - not bad for a town of fewer than 200 people.

Tom attended the University of South Dakota for two years, was drafted and spent much of his U.S. Army time in Japan. After his discharge, Tom worked at various jobs and attended Black Hills State University, graduating in 1957. He then went to Thailand, where he surveyed new highway construction, in that country. Upon his return to the United States, Tom worked at various jobs as a civil engineer, ultimately working on the McCormick Place in Chicago. While in Chicago, Tom and Helen were married. They moved to Wyoming where Tom surveyed for coal, oil and uranium. Later he went to Alaska and worked on the pipeline.

Tom and Helen bought and managed a motel in WaKeeney, KS. They sold it and moved to Anchorage, AK, where the owned and operated another motel. After several years they sold it and purchased a motel in Rapid City, SD.

Tom loved to travel. He visited over 45 countries, some more than once. Once he retired, back in Belvidere (population was now about 45 souls) he took up the job of keeping the town and cemetery neat and clean. Tom and Helen continued to travel. About four years ago, Tom had major surgery and was unable to do much of anything for many months. He never regained his previous strength, but nevertheless he was planning on a trip to Mexico City in December of 2009.

Tom would accept almost any challenge. When he was 70, he ran a race with a much younger man, but passed out before the finish line, skinning his knees and blackening his eyes. He pretty much thought he could do anything and, for the most part, he could. He said he wanted to be buried in the Belvidere Cemetery, to be with his friends. That wish was granted.

Survivors include Thomas' step-son, David Jewett of Dwight, IL; step-daughter, Christine Childers and her husband, Michael, of Arlington, Heights, IL; three step-grandchildren, Brenda Obil and her husband, Felipe, of Arlington Heights, IL, Michael Childers of Arlington Heights, and Robert Childers and his wife, Janet, of Round Lake, IL; one step-great-granddaughter, Lexi Childers of Round Lake; two brothers, Keith Carrico and his wife, Jane, of Florence, OR, and Otha "Buck" Carrico of Quartzsite, AZ; one sister, Phyllis Owens of Rapid City; and a host of other relatives and friends.

In addition to his wife, Helen, Thomas was preceded in death by his parents and their dog, Shadow.

A memorial has been established.

Arrangements were with the Rush Funeral Chapel of Kadoka. Online guestbook available at www.rushfuneralhome.com