Obituary: R. Thomas Wendell |

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Obituary: R. Thomas Wendell

April 13, 1951 ~ August 5, 2013

The kind, generous, and passionate spirit of Tom Wendell passed into the next realm on Monday, August 5th. Tom was born in Montreal, Canada in 1951 to Bruce and Inge Wendell. After a short stay in Montreal, his father was re-stationed from the Pentagon for post WWII intelligence work, and the family moved to Los Angeles for the remainder of Tom's upbringing.

Tom's brother Ted was born in 1957, and the two boys were raised with the heavy German influence of their mother, Inge. Many trips to Europe were made during their lives, and Tom's appreciation for nature, culture, arts, recreation and community service were learned from his parents and dual heritage. Much of Tom's later activism was inspired by the efficient and well developed methods he observed in Europe.

Tom was bi-lingual and enjoyed a close relationship with his family in Germany, whom he visited often with his parents, and then later with his brother, Ted. The two boys made quite an impression when together, or apart, as their passion and enthusiasm were very evident.

Tom moved to Lake Tahoe permanently in the mid 1980s, and he became a well known figure in the community for his social activism. He was also a fixture at Tahoe Sports LTD for many years where he made many friends. It is difficult to imagine Tahoe without seeing the 6'5" Tom riding his bike in town or on the many trails he frequented.

Tom is survived by his brother, Ted, of South Lake Tahoe, and many cousins and relatives throughout Europe.

A celebration of life will be held on Sunday, Aug. 18th at 3pm at Lake Tahoe Golf Course. A short service will be performed by Father Oliver of Our Lady of Tahoe Catholic Church at 3:30 with a reception following the service.

All are welcome. Come by bike, kayak, surfboard, paddleboard, wind power, solar power or any other means. Donations in his memory should be made to Sustainable Tahoe, The Lake Tahoe Bike Coalition or Barton Hospice. Thank you all.