Thomas Dean Persing, 81, finished his mortal journey on April 19, 2020. He was sleeping and at peace with his family nearby.
He was born January 19, 1939. After growing up in a rural home without indoor plumbing, he earned degrees from Bowling Green State University in Education and Mathematics, taught math in North Olmsted, Ohio, and was a leader in creating state-of-the-art computer systems at the National Air and Space Intelligence Center. His work was key to understanding foreign military capabilities from 1972 to 1998, and earned him a coveted place on the NASIC Wall of Honor.
Along the way, he courted and married the one of the prettiest girls at Bowling Green, Pauline (Pruden) Persing, in 1961. They had three children: Ray (Gretchen), Sonja, and David (Julia), and 11 grandchildren whom he loved very much. He is also survived by his sister Phyllis Williams, of Findlay, Ohio.
He supported his children’s many individual activities, and also was active in the community – he was a trustee for the Tipp City United Methodist Church, a volunteer leader with Cub Scout Pack 363 and Boy Scout Troop 285, helped establish Tipp-Monroe Community Services, was a timekeeper for countless track and cross-country meets, and helped with bond levies for the construction of a new high school. He was similarly involved with his grandchildren’s passions, building Pinewood Derby cars, attending theatrical productions, and helping with 4H and school projects.
Over the last 20 years, he supported the Miami County Parks District educational department by producing videos for their award-winning programs. His passion for bird-watching and photography resulted in phenomenal images which he freely shared with his many friends.
He accomplished all this despite having been afflicted by polio at the age of 9, which resulted in paralysis of his left leg. Whether this is what begat his well-known ‘tenacity’ or his ‘tenacity’ is what allowed him to overcome this setback is moot. He never let anything stop him, and only rarely did it slow him down. By example, he demonstrated what it was to live life to its fullest, and thereby passed his ‘tenacity’ down the family tree a couple of generations.
He fought his cancer diagnosis for the last six months with the same energy he brought to everything he did. He overcame much in his life, and was an inspiration to many. He lives on in the love he created, the memories he made, and the hearts he touched.
Donations in his memory may be made to Hospice of Miami County, Bruckner Nature Center, or the Miami County Park District.
Final arrangements are being handled by Frings and Bayliff Funeral Home.
Due to Covid-19 a memorial service will be held at a later date when conditions permit.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Thomas D. Persing, please visit our floral store.