Thomas Austin Rhodes

March 3, 1943 ~ November 22, 2019 (age 76)


Thomas A Rhodes age 76, died on November 22, at home after a courageous battle with Pancreatic Cancer.

loved music and became the life of the party with his legendary dancing skills if ever there was a song with a beat to be heard. He played the guitar in a band as a young man growing up in Waltham, MA where he attended high school at Waltham High School. Tom was a great storyteller, always regaling audiences with a quip or favorite phrase (“Joe the Ragman” comes to mind), usually accompanied by a Dewars in hand. He loved to read, golf, travel and spend time with his family. Most surprisingly, he became somewhat of a foodie later in life, even extending his pallet beyond Cheeze-its and peanut butter & orange marmalade English muffins.

Tom was born on March 3, 1943 in Newton, MA and spent his summers in Ipswich where he grew to love the ocean. After graduating high school, he served in the Army and was stationed in Germany, and after discharge, he and wife Shirley settled in Maynard, MA. Tom’s career spanned over 35 years at the US Army Natick Soldiers Systems Center in Natick MA where he rose from the motor pool to become Deputy Commander, overseeing all of the operations of one of the Army’s major research facilities.

Tom often said he was lucky enough to have met two soul mates in his lifetime: first wife Shirley, who passed away in 2000, and his second wife Stephanie whom he married in 2005.
Tom and Shirley had three sons: Thomas Rhodes Jr. (wife Anne), Rob Rhodes (wife Windie) and Michael Rhodes, who passed away in 2005. With Stephanie he became step-dad to Vicki Sorensen (husband Scott) and Tom Boward (wife Kristine).

Tom is survived by eight grandkids: Austin, Hanna, Shane, Brian Rhodes, John David Trapp, Bobby & Jennifer Rhodes, Riley & Ryan Sorensen, and Zander & Aleah Boward.
He is survived by two siblings: Daniel Rhodes (wife Phyllis) and sister Elizabeth Rhodes. He is preceded in death by older brother William Rhodes (surviving wife Brenda) and Phillip Rhodes (surviving wife Kathy). Tom remained close to Shirley’s sister Nancy Camposano and her husband Paul and to Shirley’s mother Anna Centola (age 99).

Tom loved deeply and was wholly and completely dedicated to his wives Shirley and Stephanie and to his family. He will be missed terribly by all who loved him.

A Celebration of Tom’s life will be held in January 2020. In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate contributions to the Pancreatic Cancer Society Action Network (

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