Thomas Arthur Bird, 72, of Charleston passed away in the loving care of the Hubbard House on January 2, 2024 after a long illness of Primary Progressive Aphasia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Tom was fourth of seven children born to Lionel and Ellen Bird who raised their flock in Grosse Pointe, Michigan. He graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Arts and History in 1976.
Tom retired as General Manager from Town Center Mall in September of 2017. He began his 17 years of service with Forest City Enterprises in 2000 and quickly developed an affinity to the Charleston community. He was a retail property manager in various shopping centers around the country including The Somerset Collection in Troy, MI; SouthPark Mall in Strongsville, OH; The Galleria at Ft. Lauderdale where he met and married Melanie; and at Villa Linda Mall in Santa Fe, NM. He made many lifelong friends during his years in the industry.
Tom was a big man with a gentle voice and a soft heart. He was a devoted husband to his wife Melanie and loving father to their two children. He was a history enthusiast from an early age, finding entertainment in reading the encyclopedia as a child and later in life used his knowledge of history and facts to clear the Jeopardy board every episode. He was an avid crossword and sudoku puzzle player, a country music fan, loved good food and a good scotch. Everyone knew that Tom was passionate about golf. He played in Scotland, Hong Kong, Argentina, Pebble Beach and every small golf course in between despite the weather.
Tom is survived by his wife of 29 years Melanie, who is forever grateful for his love, his daughter Taylor Bochinski (Joseph) of Martinsburg WV and his son Dr. Kyle Bird, of Greenville NC. His surviving siblings include Ian Bird, Denver, CO; James Bird (Linda), Dallas, TX; and Julie Bird, Auburn Hills, MI.
The family would like to thank Tom’s caregivers Aleesa, Pat and Melissa for lovingly caring for him at his home over the past year. Dementia takes a toll on families but through dear neighbors and friends, Tom was able to stay at home, safe and well-attended. The family is grateful to you for giving him that comfort and peace.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be made to the West Virginia Golf Association to continue their support for junior and senior golf programs where Tom and his son Kyle made lifetime memories together. Giving someone the opportunity to love the sport as much as he did would be a cherished legacy.
West Virginia Golf Association, 1 Frances P. Jordan Way, Charleston, WV 25302 or online at https://www.paypal.com/donate/?hosted_button_id=JF35KBZWGE656
A memorial and celebration of life will be held on January 27 at Bible Center Church with visitation starting at 10 AM and the service at 11 AM. Memories of Thomas may be shared by visiting www.snodgrassfuneral.com and selecting the obituary. Snodgrass Funeral Home, South Charleston, is handling the arrangements.