On April 13, 2021 we said goodbye to a very special man when Thomas J Crane lost his battle with cancer at the age of 68. He had spent his last two weeks of life being cared for by Hamilton’s Marcus Daly Hospital staff. His passing leaves a great many friends and relatives with heavy hearts.
Thom was gifted in many art forms. He especially took pride in his abilities as a sculptor of metal and glass, but music was his true passion. For those of us who were fortunate enough to hear him play his guitar and sing his favorite songs, it was magic. His repertoire was extensive, covering many genres.
He loved riding motorcycles, everything from dirt bikes to Harleys. He often lamented that there were only two directions to go in the Bitterrroot, north or south. But either way was just fine – it was riding that mattered.
Thom entered the world on March 4, 1953 in Redding, California, the fourth of five sons born to Bess and Les Crane. He spent his youth in the timber country on the Crane Ranch in Montgomery Creek, California before the family relocated to Alaska in 1969. As an adult, he traveled the US fairly extensively, but the desert always held a special place in his heart. The sands of the Mojave in California and those of New Mexico frequently beckoned him back. The Bitterroot became his home in the early 2000’s and he truly left his sculptor’s mark here.
He was preceded in death by both parents and by his older brother Ric, who was KIA-Viet Nam. He is survived by his two sons Jess and Brian, wife Dora, brothers Jim, Ralph (Sandy), and Fred, dear local friends John LaPrade and Jim Schwehr Sr., as well as countless others from near and far.
Roll On, Thom…Roll On!
Cremation has taken place under the guidance of Daly-Leach Chapel. There will be no services per Thom’s wishes. His ashes will be scattered at a later date.