Thomas Theobald, 99, of Oelwein passed away Monday November 16, 2020 at MercyOne Senior Care in Oelwein. Visitation will be private. Public funeral services will begin at 10:30 AM on Monday November 23, 2020 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Oelwein with Fr. Ray Atwood officiating. Interment will be in Woodlawn Cemetery at Oelwein. A memorial fund has been established.
Due to state and federal guidelines on gatherings regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing is required. Those in attendance are required to wear a mask.
Thomas Reidel Theobald was born in West Union on May 6, 1921, the first son of Thomas V. and Evelyn (Reidel) Theobald. The family moved from West Union to Oelwein where Tom attended Sacred Heart Catholic High School and later graduated from Oelwein High School with the class of 1939 when he began working at City Laundering Company. In 1942 he enlisted in the Army Air Corps Aviation Cadets. On June 23, 1942 he married Shirley Streight. After graduating from the Aviation Cadets, he was assigned to the 90th Bomb Group in the Pacific as a Navigator. During his WWII service he flew fifty missions. Following his discharge he remained in the Air Force Reserves for twenty-seven years and retired as a Lieutenant Colonel.
When Tom returned to Oelwein after his service, he went back to work at City Laundering Company. Over the years, he worked in almost all departments, finishing as plant Manager and retiring after forty-five years.
Tom was a long-time member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church where he served as president of the Legion of Mary, was a Eucharistic Minister and Lector. For several years he took communion to members at Oelwein Care Center. He also volunteered as a dishwasher for funeral dinners at Sacred Heart.
As a Big Brother for Volunteers for Youth, he mentored a “little brother” Tom Hansen from third grade through graduation. Their friendship continued through the years until Tom Theobald passed away. Tom was a member of the Oelwein Lions Club where he had served terms as president, secretary and treasurer. He was a member of the Jaycees, the American Legion, and a past member of the Knights of Columbus. After retirement from City Laundering, he was a driver for Meals on Wheels and enjoyed serving as a blood bank escort. He was also a member of the Care Review Committee at Oelwein Care Center, serving as a resident advocate for twenty years. A great pleasure of that position was derived from taking residents for rides around the northeast Iowa area. Tom was an avid reader, bridge player and sports fan of high school games, local games and televised games.
Tom is survived by three children: Cindy (Larry) Lundry, Ann Young, and David (Cindy) Theobald; daughter-in-law Laura Theobald; eight grandchildren and twenty-three great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife Shirley; his brothers: Carroll (Sandy), Jamie, Richard, Jack and Jerry; his sisters: Mary Barbara and Jane Alice; his sons: Christopher and Tom; and son-in-law Gordon Young.