Thomas James Montgomery was born on Feb. 23, 1940, in Rhinelander, to Duke and Dorothy Montgomery. He had one brother, and “lots of sisters”. Tom grew up on Boom Lake, and that lake and he were friends. He spent summers swimming, boating, waterskiing and fishing. In the winter he and his family would go skiing, tobogganing and snowmobiling. He loved to go fishing and hunting with his Dad and other family.
He attended Evinrude outboard school in Milwaukee, and helped his dad out at Duke’s Outboard Shop. He graduated from NCTC with an Associate’s Degree in Marketing and worked at Marathon Electric for a couple years. He received a degree at UW Stout in Marketing and Business Education and taught at Wausau West High School for the next 27 years. In that time earned a Master’s Degree in Business Education from UW-Eau Claire. He was an ambitious, talented and popular teacher known to most as Monty. In that time he also was the DECA coordinator, creating wonderful opportunities for the students he worked with.
Tom married Deyonne Taft in 1972, and they lived in the same house on Schroeder Drive for 33 years. Together they had two daughters, Mary Beth (Mike) Mattes and Susan (Dan) Teteak. Together with the family dog (Princess) they went camping, on RV trips, fishing, and spent many holidays and vacations between their parent’s homes in Chetek and Rhinelander. Many nights and weekends were spent around one neighbor or another’s dining room table, talking and laughing. Tom and Dee traveled often, and sometimes as passengers in his sister Mary Ann and brother-in-law Ron’s motor home. Together they were connoisseurs of many breakfast establishments.
In 2007 Tom and Dee moved next to his Mother and Dad’s and spent some wonderful years enjoying the bay, fishing from a boat, dock or through a hole in the ice. He loved being on his fishing boat, especially when it was parked in the driveway where he could work on it hours on end.
Some other things that Tom loved were cozy Door County Christmases with his wife, kids and grandsons, Great Lakes fishing trips, birthdays (especially his own), World War II shows, Packers games, tinkering, creative problem solving and ice cream.
Towards the end of his life he didn’t talk much, but he didn’t have to. He had built loving lasting relationships that needed no words. He always had a kind smile, and a laugh that you couldn’t help but laugh along with. If you knew Tom, you have a story about Tom and maybe someday you can share. In the meantime he’s making new stories in heaven with those that have passed before him, and we can’t wait to hear them.
Tom is survived by his wife Deyonne "Dee" (Taft), his daughters Mary Beth (Mike) Mattes and Susan (Dan) Teteak, his grandchildren River and Reed Mattes, his sisters Mary (Ron) Kalkofen and Judy (Bob) Anderle, his brother James Montgomery, nieces, nephews, other family and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his sisters Coleen and Susan Montgomery, Arlene Wales, Marilyn Laggis and Jean Mary Stevens.
Visitation for Tom will be held on Friday, Sept. 1, 2023 from 9:30 to 11 p.m. with memorial services following at 11 a.m., all at the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Rhinelander. Reverend John Kuziej will be officiating. Interment will follow in the Northland Memorial Park Cemetery. The Carlson Funeral Home (715-369-1414) is serving the Montgomery family.