A photo of Franklin Thomas “Tom” Unruh

Franklin Thomas “Tom” Unruh

January 2, 1949 - July 10, 2022

Franklin Thomas “Tom” Unruh, age 73, of Taylors Bridge, DE, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his loving family on Sunday, July 10, 2022.

Born in Elkton, MD, on January 2, 1949, he was a son of the late William G. and Wilhelmina Mackie Unruh. Tom proudly served his country in the United States Army National Guard from 1971-1977. He was a 1971 graduate of the University of Delaware, majoring in Plant Science. He started his career at the Ichthyological Associates in Middletown, DE, where he was a Senior Research Biologist from 1971-77, studying phytoplankton in the Delaware River. Tom and his wife, June, bought their dream farm, Taylors Bridge Farm, in 1977 on Route 9 along the banks of the Delaware River.

Tom was a farmland preservation pioneer and among the first group of farmers in Delaware to preserve his farms. He was a staple of the farming industry and an active member of his community. Tom was a member of Friendship United Methodist Church, Delaware Farm Bureau, New Castle County Farm Bureau, Delaware State Grange, Odd Fellows, Delaware Sporting and Trapping Clays, and he was a Councilman for the Delaware Fish and Wildlife Commission.

In addition to his parents, Tom was preceded in death by his siblings, Delbert A. Unruh, William “Billy” Unruh, and Jo-Ell Malloy. He is survived by his beloved wife of 55 years, June Webster Unruh; loving children, T. Scott Unruh (Pam) and Lori June Unruh-Snyder (Justin); siblings, Covey Unruh (Becky) and Martha McDowell (late Larry McDowell); grandchildren, Cooper Mackie Unruh, and Reagan Claire “R.C.” Unruh, his devoted 4-legged companion, “Chester”; and many special cousins, nieces, and nephews. Tom loved to spend time with his family; he also loved trapping, fishing, and hunting and was a compassionate steward of the land, especially the marshlands surrounding Blackbird Creek. He especially enjoyed duck hunting, taking his daily rides around the farm with “Chester” and vacations with his wife, “Junie.”

A visitation for family and friends will be held from 9 am until 11 am on Saturday, July 16, 2022, where a funeral service will begin at 11 am at Spicer-Mullikin Funeral Home, 275 East Main Street, Middletown, DE.  Interment will follow in Friendship United Methodist Church Cemetery, 139 Paddock Road, Townsend, DE.

Tom was a recipient of a kidney donated by his lovely sister, Martha. In lieu of flowers, donations in Tom’s memory may be made to the National Kidney Foundation, 30 East 33rd Street, New York, NY 10016 or by clicking here or to Taylors Bridge Community Center, 121 Flemings Land Road, Townsend, DE 19734.

 

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38 Condolences for Franklin Thomas “Tom” Unruh

  • Tom was a very special person,enjoyed talking and joking with him about farming and life in general.People like him only come around once in your lifetime.Love and prayers for his family.

  • My condolences to Tommy’s family and friends. It was an honor to have known him, from Middletown High, “IA.”, and Taylor’s Bridge. One of a kind, he will be missed. His memory will long stand over Route 9.

  • A many a day spent on the farm combining crops sometimes till the wee hours of the night and Tommy was always right there with us. So many stories shared over the years about family, the cows, is it going to rain or are we ever going to see the sun, what is the moisture running, his favorite dog at that time and how June didn’t want the dog anywhere else in the house and he would sneak him in when she was at work! He loved his children and loved June and enjoyed traveling. Rest in Peace Tommy. Our love and prayers are with your family.

  • So very sorry for the loss of Tommy. He was a mainstay of the Taylors Bridge Community. As a young girl I often was the babysitter for his kids while he and June were able to have a night to themselves.

  • Tommy was a great guy. He loved hunting and especially waterfowl. We shared several duck and goose blinds over the years. He was a pleasure to spend time with. I appreciate his friendship. Condolences to his family.

  • So sorry to hear of the loss of your loved one . RIP Tommy Unruh. My heart amd prayers are with June Unruh and the rest of the family.

  • June and family,
    We are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you.
    Kenny and Nancy

  • My love and prayers to June, Scott, Lori and the rest of the Unruh family! I have so many great memories on the farm growing up! Tommy was a great man! May you all find peace in all those special memories that you have!

  • Dear June and family — I offer my sincere condolensces in the loss of husband and Dad, My prayers are with you all and offer any help that you may need. God bless you dearly!! Chaplain Odessa Fire Co.

  • Great man leave great stories…

  • He will be missed by myself and my family. Was always an eventful time when I would stop at the farm or in in the middle of Rt.9 to discuss the events of the day. Spent many a day laughing about the world and politics. Thanks for all the moments and thank you for your service my friend, I Salute You.

  • June,
    So very sorry to hear about Tom’s passing. Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers. I will always remember his
    smile and twinkle in his eyes.
    Jeff and Joyce Bartsch

  • I extend sincere condolences to you June on the lose of your husband Tom. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this very sad time.

  • Very sorry for your loss, take care.
    John Barton

  • Rest easy uncle tommy, I will miss you. Watch over aunt june, and the rest of the family❤️❤️

  • Dear June and family, may time ease your sorrows and soothe your souls.

  • So sorry for your loss, we all are grieving for such a loss to our community. Always a smile on his face. Sending love and prayers. Jo

  • Dear June and family,
    So sorry to hear of Tommy’s passing, he truly was one of the great stewards of the land. I always enjoyed talking hunting,fishing, and wildlife management whenever I saw him. He gave me good advice for our 32 acres over in Maryland. I will always think of him as the “Mayor of Taylors Bridge”
    God Bless and Godspeed.

  • So sorry that you lost your husband, and father. We have many cherished memories of Tommy. His devotion to family and farm can not be duplicated. Nor can his smile and laughter. Our sincere sympathy to all of you.

  • My condolences to June, Scott and Lori. He will be missed. To the only man I know that could out talk my father.
    I will always remember the day we were hauling hay and got a flat tire on the truck in the hay field and it took us like 4 hour to break the lock off if the spare tire up underneath the truck, grant you this was way way before cell phones were invented. He had the patience of a Saint that day. He taught me how to change a tire that day, and never to lock a spare tire onto a farm vehicle.
    He will be missed by all of Route 9..
    He is at peace, and talking someone’s ear off on all the things they have missed.

  • Sorry for your loss of a great husband,, father and a friend. Tommy was a friend to all and we know agriculture or of the
    land was very important to him. He surely was a talker of history with interest. We will miss him much at Grange and Farm Bureau. Prayers are with his family for comfort,

  • I send my deepest sympathy and prayers 🙏 to you all. May the good lord will taking care of him now.

  • we are so sorry and deeply saddened by his passing. our prayers are with you.

  • I have knownthe Unruh family for sixty years. We were nrighbors on Bunker Hill Road and rode on the school bus together. I was very good friends with Tommy’s sister Jo-Ell. The Unruhs were good farmers and a very creative and hard working family. Although I do not know Tommy’s children I want them to know their father was a hard working man and a good father. I hope you will follow in his footsteps and carve your own destiny in this world.

  • My deepest condolences to the Unruh family.

  • Tom was my favorite boat mate at IA as he always lightened the mood. He was always a 20 minute stop when I was working in the area. June and family, so sorry for your loss. He’s no longer suffering from his health issues, now he’s talking to everyone in heaven!

  • June and family,
    I was so sorry to hear of Tommy’s passing. My heart goes out to you for this most difficult loss. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

  • Rest In Peace
    🙏🏻

  • June and family, we are so sorry for your great loss and feel so blessed we were able to see and talk to you and Tommy recently. It was always a pleasure, he will truly be missed by all.
    God Bless

  • June and family,
    I am so sorry for your loss of such a wonderful man. He never met a stranger, and was the true embodiment of everything a farmer should be. I’m sure he is having a great time catching up with all who have gone before, while they wait for the rest of us. May you find comfort and joy in his memory.
    Sincerely,
    Sherry

  • June and family,
    We will miss talking with Tom while caring for Chester (although Muddy was first). Please accept our deepest sympathy for your loss.

  • I am so sorry to hear of Tommy’s passing. He was a great man and a good friend to my dad, Joe czajkowski. I hope they are both in heaven shooting the breeze. Thoughts and prayers to June and the family. 💕

  • My condolences to the Family.Henry enjoyed the time talking to him. Was a pleasure to be around. Tommy will surely be missed. R.I.P my friend.

  • My deepest sympathies to June and the rest of the family. I remember Tommy as a good friend from the class of 1967. He was a good guy and class act.

  • To All Tom’s Family,
    You have our deepest sympathy.
    So sorry for your loss.
    Jack & Annette Farrell
    (Julie Unruh’s Grandparents)

  • June and family….
    I was so sorry to hear that Tommy passed. He was so fun-loving and had a smile for everyone…and loved to tease and laugh. I only wish I had been fortunate to spend more time around him, because when I did I always came home feeling so positive. What a great person…..always here for you if needed !

  • June, Scott, Lori & Family,
    Thinking of you all and sending my condolences.

  • June and Family,
    Sorry for the loss of Tom. Just wanted to let you know you are all in our thoughts and prayers.
    Kenny and Pearl