Thomas J. Ahlman, 79 of Valparaiso, passed away peacefully on Monday, July 24, 2023. He was born June 13, 1944 in Chicago, IL to Harold and Muriel (Hoff) Ahlman. A 1963 graduate of Maine East High School, Tom worked in Chicago as a printer and later in Illinois and Indiana as a cook. One of his favorite pastimes was spending time as Tom-Tom the clown, primarily doing volunteer work and parades. Tom’s favorite activity was to go “dinky-donking” with his friends. He loved his friends and loved being with them, with special enjoyment of any and all road trips. Tom had a kind nature and a gentle soul, and never had an unkind word to say about anyone. For many years, Tom was a parishioner at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Chesterton, where he served in several ministries and was a member of the Parish Council. More recently, he was a member of Holy Martyrs Parish in Merrillville and the Knights of Columbus.
On June 6, 1981 in Decatur, IN, Tom married his loving wife of 42 years, Ruth Baker who survives along with his dear friend, Jay Ramirez of Valparaiso; brothers, Dick (Priscilla) Ahlman of Des Plaines, IL and Bill (Joan) Ahlman of Dundee, IL; step-sister, Barbara (Steve) Colon of Winthrop Harbor, IL; sisters-in-law, Mary Baker of South Bend, Ann (Bob) Kershner of Plymouth, and Jean Larrabee of Decatur; brother-in-law, Joe (Nona) Baker of Decatur; and twelve nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; stepmother, Gladyce Ahlman; sister-in-law, Eileen Gardner; and especially missed his friend, Rev. James Meade.
Following cremation, a Committal Service will be held August 11, 2023 at 11:00 AM at St. Patrick Cemetery 825 S. Calumet Ave., Chesterton with Rev. Ted Mauch officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorials are requested to: VNA Hospice of NWI, to the family for Masses, of to the charity of your choice.
Tom will always be close to our hearts, Love you Tom. -Susan Angell
We will remember you in our thoughts and prayers. -Ken and Barb Lengerich
Words aren't enough to express the deep feelings of the loss of this special man I will forever think of him..with love and respect. He's with his God now, but, it's still so hard on his family that is left without him..dear Ruth, you had the best! -Pamela Morgan
Tom was a great friend for over 30 years, and his love, loyalty, enthusiasm and authenticity will be missed. Special memories include seeing Judy Collins at The Hemmens in Elgin and our first visit to see Tom and Ruth at their home in Valparaiso shortly after their move from Naperville. Tom was an angel to many during his time with us, and now is with the other angels in heaven. -Dave Zillmer
Dear Ruth and Jay and Bridget. [Tom's closest]
All the wonderful memories. "Dinky Donkeying" as he called shopping for things we "didn't" need. Ha! Like "Pipes" and "Skeleton Keys." And "coffee thermos's." What fun!. It always started out with a pot of coffee brewing at home, then breakfast at one of the many "favorite" eateries he had. Great company. Fun conversations. Waitresses and staff. And if we were adventuring out there long enough, we end up at lunch somewhere at another unique place with a delicious menu. He was a kind man. a "clown" of sorts, a heart the size of the universe, loving his human family and all their canine family as well. Now he is with them all....going out to breakfast with Father Meade, in heaven, one of his dearest friends on earth. And I'm sure if they are having dinner at a heavenly spot, "Meatloaf" will be the main course! Then a game of Monopoly.....played by the rules I'm sure in heaven........rest in divine peace Tom...until we meet again......you will be dearly missed......and please pray for us all for daily strength and comfort to "live on without your presence." ....You often said after a loved one parted.." Life Goes On" Yes it does...this one hurts a little more buddy.....loved by many.......and your soul rests in peace. Sympathy surround. Love to all. -Joe, Nona and Bridget Baker