Thomas L. Waddington, lifetime resident of Niagara Falls, passed away on Wednesday, May 1, 2013 at Schoellkopf Health Care Center. He was 89. He was born in Niagara Falls on June 23, 1923, a son of the late Thomas E. and Corinne (Parks) Waddington. He attended local schools and graduated from Niagara Falls High in 1941.
Mr. Waddington entered the United States Army in 1943 and served in Northern France, the Rhineland, and Central Europe, achieving the rank of Technician 5th Grade. He was stationed with the 44th Army, 69th Engineering Battalion and worked as a welder repairing trucks, tractors, trailers, and other construction equipment. He received the European - African and Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with 3 Bronze Stars, the Good Conduct Medal and the Bronze Star Medal. Following his Honorable Discharge in 1945 he attended the University of Buffalo and graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering in 1950, the first engineering class to graduate from U.B.
In 1994, Tom returned to France to remember the 50th Anniversary of the invasion of Europe (D-Day) and in 2000, he attended his 50th year reunion at U.B., including a football game, which sadly to say, U.B. lost.
He married Jean Morden who is the mother of his three children, Linda (Bob) Milburn, Janet and Mark Waddington. Tom has one grandchild, Nicole, whom Janet adopted in China. Nicole will be 14 in September. He is also survived by his niece, Joan Shade of Niagara Falls. He was predeceased by his brother, James (late Barbara) Waddington. His wife Jean died in 1978.
On December 26, 1993, Tom married longtime family friend Mary Colling, whose husband, Bill, graduated from U.B. with Tom. Tom "inherited" five step-children, ten grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. They all get together for swimming and picnics at Penny's house in the summer and come to Tom and Mary's for Easter, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and would visit Tom at Schoellkopf. Tom worked for Mobil Oil for 33 years in various positions. One was designing aircraft refueling vehicles. Another was overseeing the Mobil tank farms. His last position was in the main office in New York City.
After retirement, Tom volunteered his time and drove for Meals on Wheels for 13 years. He loved to travel, was a fan of NASCAR and was an avid hobbyist who loved to build model cars and planes and he belonged to IPMS-BUFCON Model Club in WNY and The Brooklyn Skyscrapers Model Airplane Club of NYC. He was also a longtime member and former treasurer of the St. James Seniors of St. James United Methodist Church, 4661 Porter Rd.
There will be no prior visitation. A Memorial Service will be on Saturday, May 18, 2013 at 11:00 AM at First Presbyterian Church, 505 Cayuga Street, Lewiston, NY 14092. Burial will be in Riverdale Cemetery in the Town of Lewiston. If desired, donations may be made in Mr. Waddington's name to First Presbyterian Church, 505 Cayuga Street, Lewiston, NY 14092 or Meals on Wheels, 1920-18th Street, Niagara Falls, NY 14305.