Obituary of Thomas J. Hickman
Thomas Jackson “Jack” Hickman
Called Jack by family and friends, passed away April 19, 2023 at age 95 following a stroke.
Born at home near Princeton, Missouri, Jack moved with his parents and brother Jordan (10 months his elder) to the east side of St Paul where his sister JaynieNell was born. He graduated from Harding High School in June 1944. He enlisted in the US Marine Corps, with boot camp at Parris Island during the war and was deployed to Pearl Harbor in September as the war was ending. At Pearl Harbor he played French horn in the base band and sang in a church choir.
Using the GI Bill, Jack attended Hamline University where he played football, sang in the choir and earned a degree in music in 1955. Over a lifetime he directed church choirs, and sang with church choirs, St Paul Civic Opera, Metro Men’s Barbershop Chorus, Senior Moments barbershop quartet and from 2007-2013 in The River Heights Chorale with son Chris.
Jack loved sports and played football, hockey, tennis, bowling and fast pitch softball. His favorite was handball which he played for 50 years, being inducted into the Minnesota Handball Hall of Fame in 1995 after accumulating hundreds of tournament trophies both locally and nationally in US Handball Association events.
Jack enjoyed travel with his family, visiting Colorado, New York, both Disney parks, the North shore and more. Jack and Sally took several tours to Europe, Alaska, Canada, Mexico. They especially loved a trip down the Columbia and Snake rivers and trips to Hawaii and a return to Pearl Harbor and Charleston (for a handball tourney) with a side trip up to Parris Island.
Jack was employed by N.S.P. for 20 years and spent 15 years as manager of McCarthy Gym on the St Paul Seminary/St Thomas campus. This was his favorite job because there were handball courts he could still enjoy after retirement.
He was preceded in death by his parents T.O. and Eulalie, brother Jordan and sister JaynieNell. Survived by wife of 67 years Sally, sons Tom and Chris (Dana Rasmussen), daughter Martha (Bob) Berglund, grandson Kyle Berglund, step-grandson Theo (April) Dahlen, nephews, nieces and Theo’s boys Felix and Arlo.
The family thanks the Memory Care Staff at Westwood Ridge for their loving care of Jack during these final years.
Memorials preferred to The River Heights Chorale and their mission to support music in the schools. RHC is a 501(c)(3) charity which can be found at www.riverheightschorale.org.
Visitation at Willwerscheid Chapel, 235 W. Wentworth Ave., West St. Paul on Thursday, May 18th from 5-7 pm. Private interment at Acacia Park Cemetery. Memorials preferred to River Heights Chorale.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Thomas Hickman, please visit Tribute Store