Thomas F. Macan

October 04, 1927 ‒ June 18, 2018



Thomas (Tom to his family and friends), passed from this life June 18, 2018 in Eureka, California. Born October 4, 1927 in Cleveland, Ohio to Edward and Julia “Margaret” (Brown) Macan, he attended East Technical High School in Cleveland, and, upon graduation in 1945, enlisted in the Army Air Corps. After completing his military service he enrolled at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, where he met the love of his life, Lena Jones. They married in 1952.

Soon after receiving his Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering degree in 1953, Tom hired into General Motors. He and Lee moved to Detroit, Michigan, then, in 1956, to Rochester, a Detroit suburb, where they lived the next 40 years. Tom initially worked for GM’s engineering journal, eventually becoming its editor. After the journal ceased publication in 1964, Tom transferred from GM’s Tech Center in Warren, Michigan to their international headquarters in Detroit. Here he played an important role in GM’s Public Relations Division from the late 1960s through the late 1980s, serving as Director of Stockholder Relations, and later, Director of Public Interest Communications. He undertook a wide array of projects in these positions, including addressing stockholder meetings around the country, producing a newsreel featuring GM’s first female test drivers, appearing on the Oopsy the Clown show to explain GM’s emissions reduction initiatives to children, editing a book commemorating GM’s 75th anniversary, and delivering GM’s public response to Michael Moore’s documentary “Roger and Me.” Tom retired from General Motors in 1990.

Tom and Lee moved to Sun City West, Arizona, in 1996, where they became active members of Church on the Green. In 2002, they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary by taking a cruise up the Rhine River and purchasing a second home in Eureka, California, where they enjoyed the cooler summer climate with their son Ed and his family. After Lee’s passing in 2014, Tom relocated to Eureka on a permanent basis.

Music was an important part of Tom’s life from his youth. He was a percussionist for the Rochester (Michigan) Symphony Orchestra from the late 1970s to early 1990s. After settling in Sun City West, he applied his drumming talents to playing with various local groups including the Sun City Concert and Pops Bands, the Desert Brass, the Rhythm Ramblers and Sun City West Music Makers, and his favorite, the Sun City Stomperz Dixieland Band, with whom he recorded two CDs.

Tom is preceded in death by his wife of 61 years, Lena; father, Edward; mother, Julia “Margaret”; stepmother, Helen (Todak); sister, Margaret (Jenkins) Meyers; brother, Edward (KIA 06-05-1945); and first cousin Jean (Macan) Vosmik. He is survived by son Edward Macan and wife Connie (Eureka, CA); granddaughters Catherine Macan and Nicole Macan and great-granddaughter Aaliyah Macan-Chaney (all Eureka, CA); first cousin Richard Macan (Florida); extended family in Ohio, elsewhere in the U.S., and the Edinburgh, Scotland, region, including Jacqueline Smail (Santa Rosa, CA), whom he was privileged to meet shortly before his passing.

The family would like to thank the staff of the Timber Ridge Renaissance facility, Eureka, for their kindness and conscientious care for Tom during the final six months of his life.

There will be a memorial service on Saturday, July 28 at noon at the DeVore-Snyder Funeral Chapel, 75 W. William Street, Delaware, Ohio. Inurnment will be immediately afterward at the Berlin Township-New Cheshire Cemetery, Delaware, Ohio.