Thomas E. Paine, age 67 of Spiker, Nebraska, passed away April 21, 2023. Memorial services will be held Saturday, May 6, 2023 at 2 p.m. at Campbell Aman Funeral Home in Blair.
Tom quietly left for his eternal fishing trip at 7:04 a.m. Friday, April 21, 2023. He was born Sept. 1, 1955 in Omaha, Nebraska to Hildreth and Charlotte Paine. Tom attended Blair High School and graduated in 1973. He then attended Milford Community College. Tom and Carol Wenske were united in marriage on Oct. 19, 1979, at Camp Fontanelle in the outdoors where the Monarch butterflies flew overhead.
Tom had many life adventures. Some of the most prominent memories in his early years were riding down the front stairs of the family home in a card board box and hiding behind the couch at diaper changing time. He was also the famous kitchen cupboard climber. As he got older, it was hunting for relics such as arrowheads, stone tools and old bottles in Fish Creek. He learned to play pool in the basement of his grandparents’ home and continued to play through the years, from the Blue Ribbon days up to his last trip to Arkansas.
Tom was a hard worker. He started as a dish washer and bussed tables at the Blair Marina and also worked as a sacker in a grocery store. He began working construction and worked with many area contractors through the years. He was not afraid of heights and was known for working on tall barns and churches in the area. He helped frame new homes and even helped build a log home. For two years he worked in the California oil fields as a seismic vibrating truck operator and dynamite shooter before returning back to Nebraska to continue working in construction.
Tom’s mom encouraged the kids to sing and Tom loved music. Later in life, he enjoyed singing with the radio on Sunday road trips listening to Acoustic Storm. The road trips included every “minimum maintenance” road he could find and the oldest looking bridges to stop and walk over. Tom’s Saturday morning greeting was, “Don’t forget to tune into Greg Wagner” no matter where he was or what he was doing.
When Tom retired it was to fish. He spent time up north to chum on the Missouri River, or was in Minnesota or Arkansas to fish.
Tom was a family support and care giver to many family members and friends. He was always available to anyone that was in need.
Tom is survived by his wife Carol; siblings: Mary Blobaum and Jeanie (Steve) Beck; siblings-in-law Deborah (Frank) Brooks, William (Lorraine) Wenske, Cyndy Paine and Dan Gunchick; nieces, nephews, extended family and countless friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, and siblings: Carl Paine and Susie Paine-Gunchick.