Thomas M. Rice, of Coupeville, passed away at the age of 71.
Born in Oklahoma City in 1947 to William and Ruthie Rice, the family soon moved to Texas and he went to elementary school and junior high in Pampa, Texas with his two brothers William and Ron. He enjoyed playing football during his high school years. After graduating he enlisted in the Navy and served as a radar technician in Pensacola, Fla. and later became a radioman on P3 Orion antisubmarine patrols during the height of the Cold War.
After his Navy service he graduated from college in San Francisco and made a career as a quality assurance engineer for several aerospace corporations based in the Seattle area. He fell in love with Whidbey Island while living there briefly and finally bought a house there in the early 1990’s where he lived until his passing.
Thomas is survived by two brothers, William and Ronald, and his two sons, Max and Timothy.