Photography

Thomas John Williams

September 21, 1958 ~ August 8, 2021 (age 62)

Obituary

Thomas (Tom) John Williams, 62, of Rockwell, NC passed away Sunday August 8, 2021. We mourn the loss of this amazing partner, father, friend and band mate. The world has lost an incredible human so let us celebrate the life that was the Tom we knew. Tom was born in Quebec Canada. His parents Raymond and Mildred Williams and brother Brian were a military family, traveling regularly and eventually settling in Texas. It was during the family’s time in Kentucky that Tom’s musical ambition took root and he learned to play guitar. He attended Catholic school there and was taught guitar first by a Nun who shared her love of Spanish style guitar with him.  It would be a lifelong passion that produced incredible original music, supported countless bands and cemented deep friendships with those who shared the stage beside him.  Tom was a jokester and a lightning rod. His sense of humor often ranged somewhere between wildly inappropriate and insanely hilarious. He had a talent for finding just the right button to push and when he did...he pushed it a lot. He often said that he enjoyed being the instigator. He knew that our strengths lie in our differences and we can’t embrace them if we don’t talk about them. Tom’s greatest strength and his greatest weakness was his heart. While the physical one eventually failed him, the love and compassion that he shared with those he loved was unstoppable. It was a love he shared with his partner and soul mate, Joy. In Joy, Tom had found a kindred spirit, with a love of music that matched his own. It was Joy’s companionship that gave Tom the incredible strength he needed to continue to push thru his difficult days. Tom was keenly aware of Joy’s sacrifice and never missed the opportunity to let her know how much she meant to him. Tom also had an immeasurable love for his three children, Kara, Corey and Samantha. Tom was amazed with each of them for their uniqueness and their own incredible talents. He would jump at the chance to talk about them or share a status of how they were doing or their accomplishments. It was Kara who gave Tom the title of Grandpa with the birth of her daughter Casey. She became his shadow. A sidekick and protégé who developed her own artistic talents.Tom’s other family didn’t share a bloodline, rather a cosmic connection of the lyrical kind. If you were a musician, a songwriter or a poet and performed anywhere across the southeast and into Texas…there’s a good chance you knew Tom. His stage was always open to anyone and he would regularly invite others to sit in and play. He was the teacher and sometimes the student, often saying that he learned the most from playing with others. Whether it was his nylon string classical guitar, his lap steel or his ’67 Gibson Firebird…the sound was all Tom. Tom was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his love and companion Joy Wolllet; daughter Kara and Her husband Ingyum Kim; son Corey Williams and his wife Shera Wynn; daughter Samantha and her husband Tony Bishop; grand daughter Casey Koontz;  his brother Brian Williams and wife Teresa; and countless other friends and fellow musicians who knew and loved him.  Thank you Tom for bringing music into our lives. You are and will always be a compassionate, genuine soul with a heart that will live for a thousand lifetimes in all of us.

 

 

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