Tom Hall Sr

Thursday, June 30, 2011
Tom Hall Sr

Thomas Clark "Tom" Hall, Sr., 88, of Bruneau died in the same house he was born in on June 28, 2011, surrounded by his wife and family. A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday July 1, 2011 at the Bruneau American Legion Hall, Bruneau, Idaho, followed by a private family burial at Hot Springs Cemetery.

Tom was born in Hot Springs, Bruneau, Idaho, on March 8, 1923 to Wilfred and Elizabeth Lewis Hall. He was the youngest of 5 children. Tom grew up on the family ranches in Bruneau and Northern Nevada. His childhood was filled with a loving family and many pets, including the best Christmas gift he ever received: a mustang colt he named Archie. His father told him that Archie was too young to be ridden, even for a skinny 12 year old boy. Tom waited the amount of time it took to run from the house to the barn and jumped on Archie, a horse he never forgot. Tom logged many miles on the back of a horse. As a youth he hitched up every animal on the ranch to a cart a buggy or a wagon, he even worked his dog (Dod) on a small cart and drove him around the ranch.

Tom attended grade school at the one-room Middle District School, located halfway between Bruneau and Hot Springs. He was graduated from Bruneau High School in 1941. He enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in the Pacific during WWII. After the war, Tom reenlisted and since he "shot expert", he spent time demonstrating the M1 Garand rifle at Army bases throughout the east coast, followed by working in research and development at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland.

Tom was honorably discharged from the Army on Friday the 13th of June, 1947. When he arrived in Mountain Home after a long trip back to Idaho he simply walked around town until he spotted a car from Bruneau; he rode home that day with Frank Mahoney in his International pick-up. Bruneau, Idaho, was a sight for sore eyes.

Tom started dating the sister-in-law of his old friend Chet Tindall, and in September of 1947 in Elko, Nevada, he married Celia Prentice of Mountain Home, Idaho. After spending 3 years on a ranch in Nevada, Tom and Celia moved home to the Hall Ranch and have remained there since.

Tom and Celia have 3 children: Tom, Jr., Chuck and Mary.

During Tom's lifetime he enjoyed many family camping trips, packing trips, hunting, rodeo and working with his teams of Belgian draft horses and mules. He could often be seen raking hay with his mules in the meadow he loved and thought was the best place on earth. He also enjoyed taking part in Oregon Trail Centennial celebrations with his team and wagon.

Tom was a Boy Scouts of America Leader with his dear friend Don Davis from 1952 to 1965. He loved every one of his Boy Scouts and continued to be proud of them through the years with all of their accomplishments. His Scouts excelled in all scouting skills and won many awards.

Tom was a long-time member of the Bruneau American Legion Post #83 and served as Commander several times. He was also the Historian and had been the Honor Guard leader since 1965. He served as an FHA loan advisor, District #365 School Board member and Owyhee County Planning and Zoning Committee member for 20 plus years. He was a charter member of the Owyhee County Sheriffs Posse, Owyhee County Historical Society, where he led many field trips and served on the Board of Directors. He was very proud to have been the Chief Judge of Election for the Bruneau voting precinct for 35 years.

Tom was also proud of his pioneer heritage as a descendant of original Bruneau Hot Springs settlers.

He was past president of the Bruneau Round-Up Rodeo and honored as the Grand Marshal in 1988.

One of the most cherished honors he received was the 2001 Idaho State Historical Society Esto Perpetua award for his contribution to the preservation of Idaho history.

Tom was often heard saying he always wanted to be a cowboy and a rancher and he did just that. Every day was spent doing what he and Celia loved most. Two of Tom's passions were admiring the beauty of Bruneau Valley and the meadows on the Hall Ranch and his love of roping a calf at a spring branding. He double hocked his last calf just this year, at age 88 on his old grey mare Hobby.

Tom will be remembered as a man with a keen sense of humor, a love for his family and friends and as being a truly remarkable one-of-a-kind person.

Tom is survived by his wife of 64 years, Celia, sons Tom, Jr. and wife Pat of Hammett, Idaho, son Chuck of Bruneau and daughter Mary Hall-Bailey also of Bruneau. Grandchildren Tony Hall, Julia Hall Salisbury, Mike Hall, Shawn and Thomas Bailey. Great grandsons, John Thomas "Jack" and Luke Salisbury and Tucker Bailey. He is also survived by a special nephew F. Greg Hall and 2 "adopted" sons Bill Gilbert and Newell Morgan as well as his special friend and "daughter" Jackie Drinkwater, who assisted his family in fulfilling his wish to die in the house where he was born. Tom was preceded in death by his parents and siblings: Elmer, Edna and Wilfred Hall and Reva Hall Couch, and his grandson John Thomas "Jack" Hall.

Memorials in Tom's honor may be made to the Bruneau American Legion Post #83, c/o Bill McBride, 29776 Davis Road, Bruneau, Idaho, 83604 or to the Bruneau QRU, c/o Mary Tindall, P.O. Box 294, Bruneau, Idaho, 83604.