Thomas James Paap, 48, died Friday, July 12, 2013, as a result of a motorcycle accident. He was hit by a deer and was not wearing a helmet. Speed and alcohol were not a factor.
Thomas was born Nov. 10, 1964, in Neenah, Wis., to parents Jean and Edward Paap. Known affectionately by his siblings as Tommy, and his friends as Tom, he was a very active child. Growing up in Arizona, he ran track in high school and loved to stay in constant motion.
Tom was a tremendously hard worker, consistently holding a job from the age of 14 until the day he died. Tom worked for LHC for nine years. He loved his job, and he loved his fellow co-workers.
Tom was involved with Special Olympics; his daughter Andrea was a part of the Kalispell Crushers. He was an avid motorcyclist; he loved Harley-Davidsons. Tom had a strong connection to music. He was a devoted classic rock fan. He use to play the radio in the car and ask, “Who is it?” and give hints as to who the artist was.
Tom spent the better part of the last 17 years with his partner, Amiee Palmatier.
Tom's most important job of all was being a father to his three daughters, Andrea Joy Paap, 24, Franteesa Marie Palmatier, 17, and Sarilee Elisabeth Palmatier Paap, 15. He loved his daughters greatly, and his memory will live on through them.
Tom was the type of man who would give a stranger the shirt off his back. He would always go out of his way to help a friend in need. And he believed in good old-fashioned manners. In this same ideal of generosity, Tom will be donating all of his organs. The last gift he gave was the gift of life.
Tom was preceded in death by his son, James Thomas Paap; his father, Edward Paap; and his mother, Jean Paap.
Tom is survived by his daughters, Andrea Paap, Franteesa Palmatier and Sarilee Palmatier Paap; brothers, Michael Paap, Larry Paap and David Paap; sisters, Debbie Gullickson and Barbara Flynn; and many more extended family.
A celebration of life was held July 15 at Johnson-Gloschat Funeral Home in Kalispell.
Tom’s ashes will be spread in Arizona to be with his son, James.