Thomas Alvies Townsend, 62, of Princeton, went to live with the Lord on Wednesday, Feb. 15, after a long illness.

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Born Dec. 27, 1949, Thomas grew up in the Westside neighborhood of Howell attending Daniel Wertz grade school, F. J. Reitz and North high schools.


He and his family were loyal members of Howell United Methodist Church and he was active for many years in Boy Scout Troop 54 at Howell General Baptist Church. He earned the rank of Eagle Scout, earned the God and Country award and was inducted into the Order of the Arrow honorary campers society.


Thomas pursued a degree in Mechanical Arts and Drafting from the University of Evansville and was a member of the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity on campus. He was employed as a mechanical and graphic artist at Potter and Brumfield -Siemens in Princeton until his retirement. Ever the creative artist, he frequently created mixed-media sculptures, wood carvings and built numerous models.


For many years he was a member of the Evansville Rolling Thunder Wheelchair basketball team and the very successful Rolling Thunder chili cookoff teams winning many competitions. He was one of the leaders in the Indiana Pacers Wheelchair basketball squads and frequently encouraged young people in events of athletic competition. He was a coach for the Lakeview Optimist T-Ball competition and an adult leader of the Boy Scout Troop in Princeton.


Ever a proponent of public accommodations for the disabled, in the early 1990s Thomas spearheaded a fundraising drive to create brick and concrete sidewalk curb cuts on all the sidewalk cross walks surrounding the town square in Princeton and always remained very proud of this accomplishment.


Thomas was preceded in death several years ago by his parents, Alvies and Ruth Townsend of Princeton and formerly of Evansville, sister Merideth Townsend Moore and Eugene Moore of Fort Smith, Ark., also formerly of Evansville.


He is succeeded by his wife, Donna (Smith) Townsend of Princeton, sister Judy (Townsend) Burns and nephew Michael Caley and his children Austin and Grace Caley, all of Dallas, Texas; nephew Christopher Moore of Fort Smith, niece Christina (Caley) Turner with her children Samantha (Killion) Harrell, Andrea and Cassandra Killion and grandson Isaiah Gomez all of Evansville; mother-in-law Joan Smith of Chatham, Ill., brothers-in-law Kent Smith of Johnstown, Ohio, and Dennis Smith of Springfield, Ill. and sister-in-law Elaine Smith Green of Springfield.


A memorial observance will be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25 at Alexander West Chapel.