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Thomas Richardson -- Rochester

January 1, 2019 GMT

Thomas Richardson, 61, peacefully passed away at his home surrounded by his family on Dec. 24, 2018, after a seven-month battle with metastatic adenocarcinoma (lung cancer).

Tom was born to Thomas and Nelly Richardson on July 23, 1957. He grew up on a beautiful Herford farm outside of Rochester.

As a young person, it was evident that Tom was very artistic; he enjoyed making sculptures out of clay and other materials. Tom graduated from John Marshall and went on to pursue education in the welding industry. It was clear that Tom was very bright and had outstanding talent working with iron and for teaching others. He soon became the instructor of the welding course at RCTC.


At age 18, Tom went on to co-own Custom Iron, a business specializing in crafting ornate spiral stair cases, railings and other specialized, high-end metal products, in Zumbrota. After 32 years, Tom went on to pursue other opportunities working with structural steel at Briese Iron. In 2001, Tom was united in marriage to Dawn (Nelson) Richardson.

Tom held close to his strong lifelong Christian faith. He enjoyed teaching young believers at Sunday school and helping with Christmas concerts. Tom always had a servant’s heart and frequently made and served meals at the local church to families in need within the Interfaith Hospitality Network (IHN). For many years, Tom donated to, prepared food for, and participated in the Relay For Life Cancer Walk. Everyone who came in contact with Tom could tell that he was a man of God. The faith that Tom had was truly a gift and he loved to share it. Tom was an extraordinary example of what a true Christian was and is.

We may never know why our beloved husband, father, and grandpa was taken from us so soon, but we are assured that Tom is going to be watching us from Heaven and cheering us all on; Hebrews 12:1. God gave us his best on Christmas, Jesus, and we gave him our best, Tom.

Tom enjoyed to fish, grill, cook, hunt, camp, garden, build things, renovate the house, spend time with his family and friends and attend church.

Tom is survived by his wife, Dawn; daughter, Christina Peterson and partner Jeremy Zieman; grandchildren, Brooklyn (6) and Braxton (3); daughter, Lindsey Biosic, her husband and children; Tory Anderson, her husband and children; one sister and four brothers. He was preceded in death by his parents.

The family would like to thank Methodist Hospital PACU; Seasons Hospice; Tom’s care team at Mayo Clinic; Pastor Shawn and Amy from High Point Church; Briese Iron; best friends, Pete and Patty Trout; and mother and father-in-law, Sandy and Lorimer Nelson, for their continuous support, prayers and love during this time.

A service celebrating Tom’s life will be 1:30 p.m. Jan. 5, 2019, at High Point Church, 4545 N Frontage Road, Rochester, MN 55901. There will be a visitation one hour prior to the service at the church.

Arrangements are entrusted to with Ranfranz and Vine Funeral Homes. To share a special memory or condolence, please visit www.ranfranzandvinefh.com.