American Veteran 01

Thomas A. Chavez

September 1, 1953 ~ October 2, 2021 (age 68)


Thomas Chavez was known by many as a father, husband, teacher, author, coach, inventor, carpenter, artist, and world traveler.

On September 1, 1953, he was born in Capitan, New Mexico, a sleepy little village high in the Western Rocky Mountains, and grew up in the rough and tumble mining community, Bayard. He was a 7-time state champion in multiple sports in high school, including wrestling, football, and track. He owned many pets, his favorite being his pet crow.

After graduation, Thomas served his country faithfully in the Navy during the Vietnam War, and at the end of his duty, he asked for and received a local separation in Spain at the age of 23. His unquenchable curiosity and demand for adventure was the starting point of a solo odyssey, spanning four continents and 27 countries. During his travels, he was exposed to some of the most fascinating cultures and the greatest works of art in the world. This created a profound and lasting impact that was reflected in his artwork, carpentry, and storytelling.

After pen paling and marrying the girl of his dreams, Andrea Chavez, Thomas went back to school and graduated from Western New Mexico University with a B.S in Art and earned an educator's certificate from Texas Tech. He taught secondary school art and coached athletics for 13 years.

Later in his life, Thomas retired from teaching and wrote and published a fantasy series titled Izz of Zia. He was also an active member of the Brazos Writers Association and was a free-lance artist on the side. In his pastime, he enjoyed collecting coins, antiques, and exotic insects, along with completing various projects in his garage.

Thomas lived in the company of his loving wife and two daughters in College Station until his death. After a long battle with kidney failure, Thomas passed away on Saturday, October 2nd, 2021. Before his passing, Thomas said that although he accomplished and experienced so much in his life, the best thing that ever happened to him from it all was marrying his wife and raising his two daughters.

In closure, Thomas lived a fulfilling and adventurous life and will be missed greatly by all who knew him. Thomas found so much pride in his family, accomplishments and was a strong believer in God and Jesus Christ. May he rest in peace.

Philippians 1:22 - Philippians 1:23
For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose, I cannot tell. I am hard-pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better.

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Graveside and Final Military Honors
October 22, 2021

12:45 PM to 1:15 PM
Houston National Cemetery
10410 Veterans Memorial Dr.
Houston, TX 77038

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