December 7, 2017
Thomas Paul Nassetta
Thomas Paul Nassetta, affectionally known by his many nicknames, Tom, Tommy, TN, and Tiger just to name a few, died peacefully in his sleep at the age of 91 with that million-dollar smile on December 7, 2017.
He would have been happy to know he left this world on Pearl Harbor Day since he was part of the generation that patriotism played a major role in their lives and serving their country was a rite of passage. As he said many times, you just did it because it was the right thing to do.
Tom was born on March 25, 1926 to Conrad and Rose Nassetta, the second of four children. His parents both came from Italy and arrived in this country through Ellis Island. Later in life, and on a whim at 2:00 AM, Tom and his wife Peggy drove to New York and purchased a plaque in his parents’ names to commemorate their journey here. His mother had attended college and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, a fact of which he was very proud.
Tom was raised in New London, Connecticut, attended the Bulkeley School for Boys, was proficient on the violin, raised hell through his teens, and joined the Air Force(known then as the Army Air Corps.) immediately after graduating high school. There he met a group of men that became known as the Hell Razors, all of whom, along with their spouses remained close friends their entire lives. While in Germany, part of their service was releasing prisoners of war from the concentration camps. Tom, along with his fellow servicemen, took many photographs and was honored to have some of them exhibited at the Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC. After WWII, he attended college, then began a career at General Dynamics in Groton, CT. Tom then relocated to Massachusetts and, after working as General Manager of Modern Blueprint, Inc., began his own successful company and stayed busy well into his 80’s.
Tom was a live wire from the start. He was spontaneous, gregarious, and generous to a fault. He loved his friends, parties, a good joke, traveling, and telling a good story. He especially loved his beautiful wife of 63 years, Peggy. They were a very social couple, had many lifelong friends, and traveled extensively with their fun group who stayed connected forever. Tom was a gifted athlete, excelling at skiing, tennis, and golf and was continually on teams for each relishing the competition but never taking it too seriously. He was a member of many clubs and organizations and had the good fortune to be a recipient of Honor Flight NE last year. He benefited greatly from the variety of people that he called good friends, and, because of those connections, his repository of knowledge was amazingly broad. He loved reading multiple papers daily, National Geographic, PBS, and never missed an episode of The Voice! As he got older, he was amazed at all the young talent out there and, being musically inclined, appreciated it greatly.
Words cannot express how thankful his family is for all the visits, attention, caring, and love that he received during his stay at Queen Anne Nursing Home from neighbors and friends. He was a very lucky man and was happy that he did things “His Way” until the end.
Tom is survived by his children, Deborah Nugent and her husband John of Edgartown, Massachusetts, his son Scott of Baldwin, Maine, and his brother Paul of Arlington, Virginia. He was the cherished grandfather of Cameron, Alex, and Zoe of Edgartown, and Rachel, Correy, Jessica, and Sarah of Standish, Maine. He is also survived by two great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. His beloved wife Peggy, whom he missed more than words can express, predeceased him in 2014.
A celebration of his life will be announced at a later date. Burial will be at the Elm Grove Cemetery in Mystic, CT and will be private.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Tom’s memory to one of the following organizations: B.P.O. Elks 360, 81 Washington Street, New London, CT-06320, Mitchell College, 437 Pequot Avenue, New London, CT-06320, Honor Flight NE, 1193 Hooksett Road, #2, Hooksett, NH-03106, or Dana Farber Cancer Institute, P.O. Box 849168, Boston, MA-02284-9168.