MISSOULA – John Thomas “Tom” Giblin Jr. passed away at his home in Missoula on Tuesday morning, Dec. 23, 2014, after living life as dedicated as anyone could in 73 years. He was the loving husband of the late Emily Woodward Giblin, with whom he shared 21 years of marriage, and the devoted father of Mathew, John Thomas III “Jake,” Robert, Amy, David and Sarah Giblin.
In his 73 years, Tom devotion was to provide for his wife and children’s world; his natural leadership about nearly everything led him to the ideal career as a commercial banker for nearly a half-century. Tom was born Aug. 25, 1941, the fourth child of the late John T. Giblin and Mary (Curran) Giblin, and was raised in Springfield, Illinois. His upbringing gave him the particular devotion to his home life, which manifested itself mainly in a lifelong passion for his family. He graduated from Springfield High School in 1959, St. Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, in 1965, Georgetown Law School in 1967 and served his country in Vietnam in 1968, where he served with distinction in Army intelligence.
Tom’s first job was in management at Harvard Trust Co. in Boston in 1969. He joined the staff at Salem Five Cents Savings Bank as executive vice president in Salem, Massachusetts, in the early 1980s and raised his family in the next town of Danvers, Massachusetts. Tom distinguished himself with his leadership abilities and from there, he was the founding president of Depositors Trust Co. in Lexington, Massachusetts, where he set and enforced standards of lending excellence which he used for the remainder of his career. Tom served as executive vice president at Sequoia National Bank in Bethesda, Maryland, for six years before moving to Missoula in 2001, where he joined three of his children and led the commercial lending department of First Montana Bank until his passing.
Anyone who knew Tom was struck by the full dedication he brought to his wife and children. An incomplete list of Tom’s devotion includes soccer (the Danvers youth soccer program was started by Tom, Geoff Finn and Dave Saunders in 1979 where he coached all of his children) tennis (the Giblin family had a court in their back yard where he taught all of them) Boy and Girl Scouts, family vacations to lake houses and the various subtleties of stubbornness. His long interests included Catholic faith, private education for his children, and family structure.
Tom’s greatest adventure was his life with his wife and their six children. With considerable distance between Tom and his siblings, Tom particularly enjoyed joining the extended Woodward family as the larger family provided Tom with happiness that his wife could be with her family. He joyfully hosted many family get-togethers where great food, conversation, outdoor fun such as swimming, baseball and bocce were always present. After settling in Danvers in 1975, Tom became involved in Rotary Club, coaching Danvers youth soccer and was completely involved in all of his children’s many pursuits. His idea of a perfect day revolved around anything he could do with his wife and children, whether it was coaching a game one of his children was playing in or a night as a family for dinner and togetherness. Tom was especially proud of Matt’s complete involvement in the Iditarod (including riding the tag sled during the ceremonial start of Matt’s fourth Iditarod), Jake and David owning their own businesses, Amy and her husband and daughter, Sarah and her recent charter to open a middle school in Nashville and Robert’s accomplishments with Missoula Downtown. Tom was thrilled his family was in Missoula together.
In addition to his children, his two black lab dogs. Dulce and Kaya, and his adopted dog, Oliver, Tom is survived by his loving family: son-in-law Mike Wilson (Missoula); granddaughter Emily Rose (Missoula); sister Anne (Giblin) Koonz (Chatham, Massachusetts) and her children Mary Landriau (Westfield, New Jersey), Joseph Koonz (Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts) and John Koonz (Los Angeles); as well as many nieces and nephews on his late wife’s side. Tom will be remembered as a professional mentor to many very respected individuals in Massachusetts, Maryland and Missoula. Tom held many friends close so that he could regale them with his glee when sharing a story about his children and allow them to celebrate with him his intense happiness for their wellbeing.
Visiting hours will be held Monday, Dec. 29, from noon to 3 p.m. and 5 to 8 p.m. (vigil at 7 p.m.) at Garden City Funeral Home, 1705 W. Broadway. A funeral Mass will be offered at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 30, at St. Anthony Church, 217 Tremont St., with a reception immediately following. Interment will follow in late spring or early summer in Danvers. Donations in Tom and Emily’s memory can be made after Jan. 1, 2015, directly to the American Cancer Society in Tom and Emily’s name: cancer.org.