Thomas John Kirchner, 80, of Hot Springs, passed away Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at Bath Community Hospital.
He was born October 11, 1940 in Brooklyn, New York, a son of the late Marjorie (Rowan) and Walter Kirchner.
Tom was a member of Warm Springs Presbyterian Church and formerly attended Mass at Holy Cross Catholic Church, Lynchburg, where he was a very involved member of the Knights of Columbus.
Tom graduated from Cornell University as an electrical engineer. During his career, he had stints driving tractor trailers across the country, working as a Field Office Manager with the State of New York Electrical Department, and working for the Lynchburg Service Authority. Despite his disability, Tom had a “go get it” attitude and there was no task he couldn’t do. The doubts of others were his motivations. He will be remembered as always looking to fix or build something, and loved to tinker with old games, his antique jukebox and other mechanical trinkets. Additionally, Tom enjoyed collecting old records and listening to the 40’s junction Sirius XM radio station.
When Tom wasn’t out “going into the city” (Covington) for groceries or picking up the mail, he could be found in his car driving around his step-grandsons, Utah and Nevada. Whether he was returning them to school, picking them up, or making a last-minute trip to a football game, the last years of Tom’s life were filled with adventure, laughter, and jokes. According to Glenna, this is what “kept him young.”
A natural jokester, his quick-wittedness couldn’t be missed, and was known to always have a story to tell. Most especially, Tom will be remembered for his big heart, witty personality as well as his kind and selfless nature – “he would give you the last dollar he had if you needed it”.
Mr. Kirchner is survived by his wife, Glenna Schelch Kirchner of Hot Springs; step-daughters, Roberta “Robbie” Kershner and husband, Dale, of Hot Springs and Catherine Letendre of Alberta, Canada; step-sons, Josef Schelch of Brooklyn, New York and John Panariello of Florida; grandchildren, Trenton Kershner of Hot Springs, Trista Sewell and husband, Marcus, of Grand Junction, Co., Utah Kershner and Nevada Kershner of Blacksburg, Jessica, Antonio, Jason, Shawn, Daniel, Joy, Justin, Sherry, Leif, Dallas, Victoria, Joseph, Andrew and John; great-grandchildren, Colton Kershner, Skylar Sewell, Kaylee, Ary'Anna, Leela, Serenity, Nico, Aiden, Landon, Alexis, Rey, Mariela, Liliana, Matthew, Jayden, Syanna, Lorenzo and Mason; as well as sisters, Margaret Fico and husband, Richard and Patricia Higgins and husband, Donald.
In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his first wife, Antoinette (Guarraci) Kirchner.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 p.m., Saturday, February 20, 2021 at the Warm Springs Presbyterian Church with Rev. Larry Roberts officiating. Additionally, a Funeral Mass will be held at Holy Cross Catholic Church with inurnment in the church cemetery at a date to be announced.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Hot Springs Rescue Squad, P.O. Box N, Hot Springs, Va. 24445 or Warm Springs Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 238, Warm Springs, Virginia 24484.