Thomas David Rigle, 70, Kokomo, passed away due to an illness on Friday, Nov. 10, 2017, at Florida Hospital Heartland Medical Center in Sebring, Florida. He was born June 1, 1947, in Peru, to Dorothea (Black) and Frederick Rigle.
Tom married Daphne L. (Nicholson) on Feb. 16, 1975, in Kokomo, at Morning Star Church. Both were living in Pontiac, Michigan, when they met. They have two children, Thomas D., Jr., Denver, Colorado, and James E., Kokomo. They have one grandchild, Hayden Rigle, Kokomo, who is 7. Tom loved his children and was so proud of them. He was able to spend this past summer with his grandson, Hayden, who he loved and enjoyed.
Tom joined the National Guard when he was 17. After graduating from Maconaquah High School in Bunker Hill, he joined the U.S. Army in 1965. He served two tours in Vietnam and earned a Bronze Star while there. He also earned the Meritorious Service Award and an Army Commendation Award. He was stationed in Germany for a tour, and then returned to the states. His last assignment was as a recruiter. He retired as a master sergeant.
He was a lifelong member of the VFW and was very proud of his service to his country. After retiring from the Army, the family retired to Kokomo. He went to work for Delco Electronics, where he retired at the age of 57. After that, he found a home in Sebring, where he and his wife would spend their winters. His goal was to never see snow or cold weather again.
For over 25 years, his favorite pastime was owning and showing street rods. He met many people through the shows, and some went on to become good friends. He always found car people to be what he called "good people."
He is survived by a brother, John Rigle, Logansport.
He is preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, Ruby Henry and Rosemary Jones, both of Kokomo; two brothers, Frederick Wendell, Monticello, and James E., Peru.
Tom requested he be cremated and his ashes will be interred at a later time. He did not wish to have a funeral or memorial service, and those wishes will be carried out.
Donations in Tom's name can be made to any organization or to their local humane society.
Published on November 16, 2017