Manhattan Athletics mourns the loss of Thomas Welling ’65

RIVERDALE, NY – Thomas J. Welling passed away peacefully on Saturday, March 26, 2022, at the age of 78. He was joined at his bedside by his adored wife, Helen, and his sons, Kurt and Thomas, who are comforted knowing Tom is joining Kate, his beloved daughter, in heaven. Tom has fought a courageous battle with leukemia over the past few months with the same determination and grace that he has lived his life.

While we were robbed too soon of a remarkable man, we are blessed by the life he led. Kind and generous, Tom set the standard as a son, student, track star, entrepreneur, husband, father, grandfather and friend. Born in Brooklyn, NY, on February 10, 1944, to Evelyn and Herbert Welling, he grew up in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, with his sisters Diane and Karen, and his brother Jim. Tom attended St. Francis Preparatory School, where he excelled as a student and athlete.

As an undergraduate at Manhattan College, Tom was one of the most decorated collegiate runners in the history of the college’s men’s track and field program. Tom has set multiple course and school records and competed in the New York AAU, National AAU and NCAA outdoor track championships. In 2017, he was inducted into the Manhattan College Athletic Hall of Fame.

After earning his BS in math in 1965, Tom served in the United States Army Reserve and as a high school math teacher in New York City, after which he entered the insurance industry. In 1978, Tom founded Welling Associates, which later became GBS Retirement Services, Inc, where he served as President until his retirement in 2002.

Tom has enriched the community of Bronxville, where he has lived since 1981, by serving on the board of several organizations, including: New York – Presbyterian Lawrence Hospital, The Bronxville Historical Society Conservancy, Stellaris Health System, Lawrence Community Health Services, Search for Change, the Bronxville PTA, the Public Library and the Siwanoy Country Club. Tom was also a member of the Bronxville Men’s Book Club, the Bronxville Non-Partisan Committee, the Philanthropic Leadership Council for Children’s Hospital of Montefiore and the Bronxville Derby. Tom served as president of Lawrence Community Health Services, where he and Helen took a particular interest in the work of the Bereavement Center in Westchester.

Speaking at his retirement dinner, Tom said: “Many of you have probably heard the expression, ‘The winner is the one who dies with the most toys. I love toys as much as any overage teenager, but I prefer this variation on that theme: The winner is the one who lives with the most joy. Tom’s joy came from his family and friends. From summer vacations on Cape Cod, to golf, fishing and ski trips, Tom wanted nothing more than to see those around him enjoy life and thrive. Although he was not the best golfer, fisherman or boater, he was able to pass on to his children and grandchildren the lessons that matter – be kind, work hard and do the right thing.

Tom’s survivors include Helen, his wife of 42 years, his sons Kurt (Chelsey) and Thomas (Erin), his grandchildren Reese, Chase, Caroline, Whitney, Saegan and Ellison, and his sisters Diane and Karen. Katie, daughter of Tom and Helen, died on April 10, 2005. He was also predeceased by his father Herbert, his mother Evelyn and his brother Jim. Tom will be missed and mourned by all who knew him.

Calling hours at Fred H. McGrath & Son Funeral Home, Bronxville, NY between 2-4 p.m. and 6-9 p.m., Thursday, March 31, 2022. Christian Burial Mass at St. Joseph’s Church in Bronxville , NY, Friday, April 1 at 10:45 a.m. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Westchester Bereavement Center, 670 White Plains Road, Suite 213, Scarsdale, NY 10583.

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