Thomas Andrew Demme

August 24, 1944 - July 7, 2023 


Thomas Andrew Demme was born and raised in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area where, as a kid, he delivered dry cleaning to the Rooney family, owners of the Steelers. (He was a Steelers fan forever!) Tom graduated from Slippery Rock University in 1969, then enlisted in the Army in 1970, in the Vietnam era.  

In 1972, Tom and Marie Antoinette Orenchak were married. They were blessed to celebrate 51 years together. 

Their first home was in Frankfort, Germany. For the next 20 years, they went where the Army sent them-- finally settling at Ft Lewis, Washington. After retiring from the military, Tom worked for Washington State for 18 years. In 2015, he began serving as a part-time election worker. 

Tom and "Toni" had two children: Philip A., 49, (Jennifer) Demme and Elizabeth, 45, (Thomas) Moran. Phil and Jen's kids are Ryan 14, and Sophia 12. Elizabeth and Tom's kids are Adeline 13, Annabel 11, and Andrew 8. He attended as many of their activities as possible. Their five (5) grandchildren were the love of Tom's life!! 

Known as "King of Volunteering," Tom gave back to the community in many capacities: Reserve Police Officer, Fire/Arson Investigator, AARP Income Tax consultant, Medical Reserve Corps, Medical Equipment Bank, Faith Lutheran Men of Faith, Vacation Bible School helper, coached youth football, baseball, and basketball. 

Tom was the Santa at the Barn Nursery for many years. A Barn representative commented, "he has appeared on more Christmas cards and scrapbook pages than we can imagine."  Families returned with college kids that had sat on his lap as very young children. He had many dogs that were brought back year after year to get their picture taken with Santa too! This year, sadly, many came to the Barn looking for him, only to find him gone.  

Cancer was the only thing to slow him down. He told very few people about his illness. He was going to beat it. He fought cancer for one year and 11 months. Finally, he lost his courageous fight. His family misses him greatly, but they know he is in heaven, happily volunteering for God. 

Tom had been a member of the Faith Lutheran Church since 1987. Services were held at the Faith Lutheran Church on the morning of September 16, 2023 and officiated by Rev. Greg Strand.  

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared with the family at