Thomas P. Metsala, 81, of Topeka, Kansas passed away on December 28, 2020 in the loving care of the Valley View Senior Life Center of Junction City, Kansas.
Respect Hours will be held Tuesday, January 5 from 5-7pm at the Johnson Funeral Home, 203 N. Washington Street in Junction City. A graveside service will be held on Wednesday, January 6 at 1pm at the Kansas Veterans' Cemetery, 5181 Wildcat Creek Road, Manhattan, with Pastor Lorenzo Jackson officiating.
Social distancing and COVID-19 protocols will be observed during all social gatherings.
Thomas was born on June 20, 1939 in Chicago, Illinois to Victor VanHala and Aune (Metsala) VanHala. He was raised in Gwinn, Michigan and subsequently enlisted in the US Navy before transferring to the US Army. He served honorably for 20 years in duty stations throughout the US and Germany with a combat tour in Vietnam. In his first duty station in Germany, he met the love of his life, Maria Hoffegesang. After his military retirement, Thomas continued to serve as a civilian with the US Army at the Fort Riley Cavalry Museum.
Thomas enjoyed many years of Sunday School teaching, was an avid reader especially with American Civil War history, and loved spending time with family and friends. He was a devout Christian who epitomized service to others.
Thomas is survived by his wife of 58 years Maria, sons Daniel and wife Elena, Thomas and wife Becky, daughters Andrea Burdick, Ilonka Fuster, Tatjana Ramos and husband Michael, six grandchildren, and eight great grandchildren.
Thomas was preceded in death by his parents, sister Mary, and grandson Julian Ramos.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Thomas’ honor to the Parkinson Foundation at www.parkinson.org or Army Emergency Relief at www.armyemergencyrelief.org
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