Thomas (Tom) Ward Nilson

  • Died: March 18, 2020
  • Location: Southbury, Connecticut

Lawrence Funeral Home

2119 Post Rd
Darien, CT 06820
Tel. (203) 655-6127

Tribute & Message From The Family

Thomas (Tom) Ward Nilson, 76, of Southbury, CT and former resident of Marietta, GA entered the Kingdom of Heaven on Wednesday, March 18th, 2020 in Greenwich, CT with family by his side. Tom had a kind and gentle spirit, was extremely hardworking and a true gentleman. He always offered a helping hand and would "show up" for anyone in need.

Tom was born to Frederick and Doris Nilson of Rochester, New York in 1943. He graduated with honors from Pleasantville High School in New York in 1961 and Miami University - Ohio with a Major in Computer Science and a Minor in Political Science.

Like his father, Frederick Nilson and sister, Suzanne Nilson, Tom began working at IBM and pursued a long-standing, respected career at the organization. While at IBM, he obtained his Masters of Business Administration at New York University (1967) as well as University of Wisconsin - Madison (1969). Over the course of his 30 year career with IBM (Manhattan, NY, Somers, NY and Southbury, CT) he held various positions at the company that took him traveling to several countries in Europe and Asia.

During his marriage to Barbara Ann Rhodes, they partnered with the local police department and veterinarian to take in domestic or wild animals that needed care before returning them to a suitable home. Additionally, Tom took on many construction projects during this time at their homes to build additions that included a barn and paddocks to provide for his family and their love of horses. He and Barbara were actively involved in the equestrian show circuit on the East Coast and would trailer their horses to shows for their daughters, including competitions at the Florida winter circuit in Wellington.

During the end of his tenure at IBM, Tom attended law school at Western New England College of Law and received his Juris Doctor in 1996. Upon retiring from IBM, Tom pursued his passion of the law and began his second career, becoming a licensed and practicing attorney in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Georgia – specializing in Elder Law, before settling down and retiring in Georgia.

A frequent visitor to Hilton Head Island, S.C. to see family and an avid outdoorsman – Tom enjoyed, biking, tennis and training as well as competing in triathlons. In his retirement, he enjoyed culinary classes (all things chocolate, spicy foods and the preferred coconut cake), and woodworking classes obtaining a Woodworking Certificate. He was also actively involved in his church community hosting church events and Bible Studies. Tom enjoyed missions' trips and utilized his carpentry skills to help build housing for those in need as well as building custom furniture from fine woods for his family.

He is preceded in death more recently by his parents Frederick and Doris Nilson, and his sister Suzanne L. Nilson.

He is survived by his first wife Barbara Ann (Rhodes) Nilson, their two daughters: Meredith (wife of Jeffrey) Maniatty, Lorna Nilson (life partner of Darren Hart) four grandchildren: Eva Maniatty, Anastasia Maniatty, Alexandra Maniatty and Octavia Wynter Hart.

A Memorial Service is forecasted for June 13, 2020. Please contact the Edward Lawrence Funeral Home in Darien, CT for the details In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to American Red Cross