Connecting the Troopers of Today with the Veterans of Yesterday.
Tom was born in 1940 in Las Vegas, NV; the second of four sons born to Levi Stewart and Kathleen French, he assumed immense responsibility for his two younger siblings and family when his father and older brother both died while Tom was in his teens. Upon graduation from LVHS in 1958, Tom entered college in Colorado, but soon transferred to University of Wyoming where he studied history and ROTC and was a member of ATO. It was here that he met his future wife of 50+ years, Sue Ellen Howard, who would wait stateside during two tours to Vietnam, and raise the family on bases in Germany, North Carolina, Kentucky, Kansas, Ohio, and California over the next 20 years. In his 20 year military career beginning in 1963, Tom spent two combat tours in Vietnam, one as Advisor to an ARVN armor battalion. The Army trained Tom in the Armor Basic Course, Armor Advanced Course, and pre-command training at the Command and General Staff College. During a three and a half year assignment instructing cadets and directing ROTC at U. of Cincinnati and Xavier U, Tom mentored a dedicated cadre who all achieved remarkable army careers over the next three decades. Following this era was a path through increasingly important Cold War assignments in Armored Cavalry units at Ft. Riley (1/4 Cav), and his last command with the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment in Bamberg, Germany. He retired from active duty in 1984 as a Lieutenant Colonel. Later Tom worked in military contracting work near Ft. Lewis for several years before switching to tax preparation, running H & R Block offices in Spanaway and on bases Lewis and McChord, before finishing this part of his career as a volunteer tax preparer at local libraries for the needy for AARP TaxAide. Outside of his beloved work, Tom enjoyed following the Seahawks and Mariners, and he was an NCAA basketball fanatic for a long time. He enjoyed a cold beer in the afternoon, a strong vodka cocktail after sunset, and he never met a vegetable that he liked. His sons remember camping and hiking trips, baseball and soccer games, and many road trips across the country with their father. He instilled in his sons, Tim and Don, professional work ethics, the necessity for higher education, a love of reading, and dedication to family. Thomas Stewart is further survived by two daughters-in-law, Kyoung Mi and Sarah, and by his two cherished grandsons, Teo and Will and his brother Bill. Remains are inurned at Tahoma National Cemetery, kent, WA.
A graveside service will be held on Friday, Sept. 19, 10:15 a.m. at Tahoma National Cemetery.
Following the service there will be a gathering at the Ram Restaurant, 103 35th Ave. S.E. Puyallup, 98374. The gathering will begin at 11:30 a.m.
Thomas W. Stewart Lieutenant Colonel, Armor US Army (Ret)
Commissioned in Armor from ROTC, University of Wyoming, 1963
Platoon Leader, Troop XO and Troop Commander, 2nd Sqdn 4th Cavalry – Germany
M41 Tank Company and M113 APC Troop Advisor, 3rd ARVN Cav Regiment – RVN
Tank Company Commander and Battalion S3, 6th Bn 32nd Armor – Ft Knox KY
Assistant S3, 1st Bde 5th Inf Div (Mech) – RVN
Squadron S3 and Troop Commander , 3rd Sqdn 5th Cavalry – RVN
Squadron XO, 1st Sqdn 4th Cavalry – Ft Riley KS
Squadron Commander, 2nd Sqdn 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment - Germany
Legion of Merit
Bronze Star w/V, 2 OLC
Meritorious Service Medal
Army Commendation Medal w/V, 2 OLC
Purple Heart, 1 OLC
Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry w/Bronze and Silver Stars
Vietnam Campaign Medal w/6 campaign stars
Combat Infantryman’s Badge
Vietnamese Armor Badge