Tom Netherton Obituary, Death – Thomas H. Netherton Jr died at the Nashville VA Hospital after contracting the flu, which progressed to pneumonia and ultimately killed him. Tom Netherton was born in Munich, Germany, on January 11, 1945, to Major Thomas H. Netherton, Sr. and Lillian Christensen Netherton, and grew up in Bloomington, Minnesota, where his father eventually retired from the Army. During the Vietnam War, Tom Jr. enrolled in the United States Army and attended Basic Training at Ft. Bliss, Texas.
He received the Excellent Trainee of the Cycle honor, as well as the Spirit of Honor Medal, which is granted to one soldier in the Brigade for outstanding leadership. Tom was accepted into Officer Candidate School (OCS) at Ft. Benning, GA, after completing Advanced Infantry Training. Tom was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant and deployed to Panama to command the 1542 Infantry Unit, eventually rising to the rank of 1st Lieutenant after a hard 12-week training session.
When Tom was stationed in Panama, he frequently sang for the troops, and his performances were carried on Voice of America, the Army’s non-military radio network. After being honorably discharged from the Army, Tom pursued his musical passion and began his singing career. His outstanding vocal abilities got him an audition with Lawrence Welk. That audition bloomed into a long run on the Lawrence Welk Show, as well as a successful singing/recording career in the Christian Music industry which includes 13 record albums and a published autobiography entitled “In the Morning of My Life”.
He developed a sizable and devoted fan base, which he still has, and many Welk family members regard him as one of their favorite celebrities. Tom is survived by his mother, Lillian Netherton, brother Brad (Paula) Netherton, sisters Julie (Bruce) Kobielush and Wendy Siebold, as well as his father, John Netherton. Those who knew Tom will cherish their memories of his wit, infectious sense of humor, and generosity. He was a man who lived his life to the utmost; a man of strong Christian faith who had found peace with God.