Thomas A. Whittaker


Thomas Whittaker passed away on the morning of June 10th, 2020 at Cornerstone Hospice in Leesburg, Florida after a four year battle with cancer.

Tom was born on January 3rd, 1942 in Duluth, MN; the oldest of Ernest and Martha Jane Whittaker’s six incredible children. He met his wife of 56 years, Arlene, in 1959, and married in 1964. He always said she was the single greatest thing that ever happened to him. They had the first of their 4 children, Todd, in 1964, with 3 more to follow; Dan was adopted from Korea in 1976, Elizabeth was born in 1978 and finally Ann-Marie in 1981.

Tom graduated as Salutatorian from Proctor High School in 1959, put himself through the University of Minnesota, Duluth, and earned a BA in business. He began his career at Honeywell in Minneapolis in 1964, and stayed with the same company until his retirement. His many years of dedicated work with Honeywell took the family all over the United States. They moved from Minnesota to Pennsylvania, then onto Massachusetts, and Northern Virginia where he became the Vice President of Marketing. In 1982 the family moved back to Minnesota, and to Duluth in 1991. Tom retired from Honeywell in 1994, but continued in the workforce through the formation of the MIBTF Task Force, which is still operating today. Tom was a vital part of the task force for 11 years, retiring for a second time in May, 2005.

After retirement, he dedicated countless hours to First Lutheran Church in Duluth, Minnesota, as well as the Depot Foundation (St. Louis County Heritage and Arts Center), and the Pike Lake Association. He was a treasured member of the community, always involved in the creation and continuity of local events enjoyed by so many people over the years.

Thomas is survived by his loving wife Arlene, children Todd (wife Lisa), Daniel, Elizabeth (husband James) and Ann marie; grandchildren Leeanne, Joseph, Paul, Mark and Thomas, siblings Margie (husband George), Kathy (partner Kathie), Patty and Penny (husband Buzz), and nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents, Ernest and Jane, and his brother, Larry.

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