Thomas, “Tom” Edward Ross, age 65, of Coon Rapids, MN went to his eternal home in heaven to be with Jesus on May 30, 2021. Tom passed away unexpectedly from a sudden complication that occurred after a bypass surgery. Tom both loved deeply and was deeply loved by his wife, Kathy Ross, and children, Amy Barnard (Joshua Barnard), David Ross (Cassaundra Ross) and Julie Knight (Jonathan Knight). Tom was grandpa to Isaiah, Amariah, Halo, Katie, Isabell, Jonas and Theo. Tom saw his greatest achievement as being a grandpa and his grandchildren experienced gentle love, guidance in faith and mentorship through his devotion to them. Tom was known for being loving, compassionate and kind. He saw those who were unseen and sought opportunities to demonstrate love to the people in his life. Tom had a deep faith that was founded in his personal walk with Jesus. He genuinely integrated his faith into all parts of his life. Tom was the son of a career Air Force vertern. The experience of being raised abroad (Florida, Montana, Turkey, Germany, Italy, and Minnesota) shaped his worldview and ability to demonstrate compassion to all kinds of people. Tom met his wife, Kathy (Valo) Ross, at a prayer group. They were married in February of 1977 and celebrated 44 years of marriage. Tom was preceded in death by his loving mother (Katherine Ross), father (Thomas Ross) and sister Maria Ross (maiden).
Tom retired in 2018 from a 38-year teaching career as a Library Media Specialist. Tom was actively involved in coaching speech, theater, debate and student congress. Tom’s coaching and teaching were influential in the lives of so many students, including his own children.
Tom enjoyed researching and learning about his personal history. He spent years developing a foundation in his Anishinaabe roots through active involvement in tribal meetings, teaching Ojibwe classes in the public school, and participating in personal interests surrounding Anishinaabe history and traditions. Tom outwardly expressed his Anishinaabe roots by not cutting his hair and wearing it braided. The last time he cut his hair was at the time of the passing of his mother.
Tom was known to always have a song in his heart. He would whistle or burst into song throughout the day. He loved listening to and singing songs from The Beatles. Tom loved birds, in particular the chickadee and cardinal. He enjoyed spending time near his bird feeders watching, whistling and talking to the birds. Tom had a silly, lighthearted, joyful spirit that lifted the mood of people who were near him. Tom was an amazing orator and will be most remembered for his stories about his life and family history.
Visitation with a Time of Remembrance followed by a Mass of Christian Burial will begin at 11:30am on Friday, June 4th, 2021 at Church of St. Paul at 1740 Bunker Lake Blvd NE, Ham Lake, MN 55304. A procession to the burial site at Roselawn Cemetery for a graveside service will follow. All in attendance are asked to wear masks and a luncheon will not be provided
The service can be live streamed at Church of Saint Paul’s facebook page.