Thomas Jerald Hudgens

Feb 17th, 1944 - Dec 23rd, 2020

Service:

Rose Hill Cemetery

Tue, Dec. 29th, 2020 1:00 PM

Burial:

Rose Hill Cemetery

Tue, Dec. 29th, 2020 1:00 PM

Thomas Jerald Hudgens

Marion- Thomas Jerald Hudgens, age 76, of Marion, passed away at 9:46pm on Wednesday, December 23, 2020 at Heartland Regional Medical Center.

Tommy was born at home to Samuel Thomas and Helen Irene (Stroud) Hudgens on February 17, 1944 in Marion. The youngest of three children, he was adored by his parents and his two sisters, Barbara and Judy. He was part of a very large family, the Owens, the Strouds, the Pulleys, and the Hudgens, developing a lifetime interest in family and becoming the family historian. He was always happy to share his knowledge of family and friends as well as Southern Illinois’ legend and lore.

Thomas started school at the age of 5 in 1950 and graduated high school in 1962.  He developed a lifelong love of books and collected many over the years covering the Civil War and World War II in which his father fought and for which Tom was very proud. He honored God and country and was a patriotic soul.

A member of Third Baptist Church in Marion all of his life, he continued attending until his health began to fail in 2019. He had many faithful friends who remained loyal throughout his life as he was a faithful friend to all.

Thomas loved country music, especially Hank Williams, with his favorite song being “I Saw the Light” and PBS was his favorite television channel where he leaned much and shared with anyone who listened.

Tom was a delight and found many friends at the Voyage (River to River), Senior Citizens, and the Heartland Rehab Center. For those interested in his residence, he would say, “I’ll put in a good word for ya!”

This year, Tom celebrated Christmas with Jesus, his beloved nephew, Mark, his mom and dad, Barry, Barbara and Jim, and extended family at the heavenly table. He passed on the news, looked into the face of Jesus, wore his new body, stepped into his heavenly home, and rejoiced with his lifelong friend, Jesus.

He left behind his loving sister, Judy Arnold, his beloved niece and her husband, Sally and Joe Pearce, and a host of family and friends to celebrate his wonderful life and sweet soul. They will never, never forget him and if it is your pleasure he will put in a good word for ya!

Graveside services will be held at 1pm at Rose Hill Cemetery on Tuesday, December 29, 2020. Mitchell-Hughes Funeral Home in Marion is assisting the family with final arrangements. Family and friends are asked to gather directly at the cemetery. Due to health concerns related to the COVID-19 virus, social distancing and the wearing of masks will be required.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be made to Marion Third Baptist Church, Hospice of Southern Illinois, or the Voyage.  

For more information, or to sign the memorial guest register, please visit www.hughesfuneralhomes.com

Share a memory, message, or condolence

*

*

16 Guestbook Messages

  • Guest: Beth Butler

    From: Marion, Illinois

    Date: December 27, 2020

    Tom always was kind to our family and so pleasant we enjoyed his company and looked forward to future visits.

    Tom enjoyed campaign time when he, his sister, Judy and brother-in-law, Barry, and several others would help assemble Dad’s campaign mailers. Sitting and working around the big dining room table, Tom’s humor endeared him to everyone.

    Tom felt very good about and proud of himself when he could assist other people in need of a helping hand. A happy person most all the time, he was sensitive to the feelings of others and set the tone for peaceful and pleasant visits.

    Tom will be missed, however, his sunny personality, uplifting attitude and his infectious positivity will be remembered fondly and as a heartwarming memory.

  • Guest: Rita Dutton

    From: Marion, Illinois

    Date: December 27, 2020

    Tom was a gentle kind soul and ever so friendly. He loved people and people loved him. He had a very supportive family his whole life. When I called Judy to check on her a few weeks ago, she told me Tom had been staying there a bit while he was sick. I remember going on a senior bus trip many years ago with his sister I believe. He was so enjoyable to be around and he was funny. I would see him on my trips to River to River when I would take communion there to some folks. He would say “helrow”, or he would say “you look pretty” or “I ruv you”! He will have a hayday up in heaven with all his love ones.

  • Guest: Ray Hancock

    From: Marion, Illinois

    Date: December 27, 2020

    Tom and I spoke often at church for many many years, and I considered him a friend. Tom. has found the ultimate peace and comfort. God bless you,
    Tom.

  • Guest: Fred and Rita Monroe

    From: Marion, Illinois

    Date: December 27, 2020

    Our prayers and love go out to you and your family. Tom will be so missed.

  • Guest: Bob Hilliard

    From: Marion, Illinois

    Date: December 28, 2020

    I got to know Tom as we both did attended Rehab at Heartland Hospital. I really looked forward seeing Tom on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and talking with him. He made rehab a lot of fun and I missed him when he stopped doing rehab.

  • Guest: Diana Etheridge

    From: MARION, Illinois

    Date: December 28, 2020

    Judy, I am so sorry for your loss. I didn’t know your brother, but I heard so many wonderful things about him over the years from people who did know him. He was truly a valued friend to many and I understand that when he entered a room he definitely brought the light with him.

  • Guest: Gwen Williams O’Dell

    From: Effingham , Illinois

    Date: December 29, 2020

    Our thoughts and prayers go with Tommy’s family. I remember many evenings spent with my mom and dad visiting Sam and Helen. Judy, I am Lester and Cora’s daughter and original and Johnnyes’ little sister. Many fond memories…

  • Guest: Gwen Williams O’Dell

    From: Effingham, Illinois

    Date: December 29, 2020

    That should have said “I am the little sister to Virginia and Johnnye.”

  • Guest: Gwen Williams O’Dell

    From: Effingham , Illinois

    Date: December 29, 2020

    Our thoughts and prayers go out for the family. I remember spending many evenings at Sam and Helen’s house with my mom and dad. Judy,I am the daughter of Lester and Cora and little sister of Virginia and Johnnye. Many fond memories…

  • Guest: Ramona scholes

    From: Marion, Illinois

    Date: December 29, 2020

    Tommy will always be special and family as you all are. He always called me cuz and said he meant it. Will miss him alot.

  • Guest: Myranda Rogers-Davis

    From: Johnston City , Illinois

    Date: December 29, 2020

    Tommy and I were very close friends and cousins. He was loving and caring beyond most!!! I’m sure he is in Heaven cause he lived the life a Godly Man should. Thoughts of love to everyone who will miss him. He would not want any one to be sad.💖

  • Guest: Michael Smith

    From: Panama City Beach, Florida

    Date: December 29, 2020

    Sorry to hear of Tommy’s passing. Diane just called and told us. Having grown up in the neighborhood and attending the Third, can say it was a blessing to know for over 70 years.

  • Guest: Phyllis murphy

    From: Marionettes , Illinois

    Date: December 29, 2020

    He was at River to River with my mom. He seemed like a very nice man & my mom liked his friendship. Sorry for your loss

  • Guest: Saundra Douglas

    From: Marion, Illinois

    Date: December 30, 2020

    So sorry for your loss. Prayers for comfort and peace for your family.

  • Guest: Selma J. Rogers

    From: Johnston City , Illinois

    Date: December 30, 2020

    Judy, I wish that I could have been able to be there with you. I will come visit with you when everything slows down and weather improves. Praying for you and all who will miss Tom. He was always happy and enjoyed assisting some one in need of his help. God Bless!! Love, Selma.💝

  • Guest: Larry & Sandy McPheron Phipps

    From: Johnston City , Illinois

    Date: January 5, 2021

    We loved going there to perform our music my husband & I with acoustic guitar and small amplifier to sing a varied group of songs. He came up to us afterwards and thanked us for singing all of Hank Williams songs especially I saw the Light as it was his favorite. He talked quite a bit to us as we took down our equipment to leave. He thanked us again. He didn’t remember me from years before but I remembered him. I was the carhop and waitress at Tom’s Bar-B-Q for several years. He sure enjoyed the time with us. Hated the virus kept us away this year.