In Memory

Tom Collier

Thomas David Collier, 67, lifelong Newton resident, passed away in his sleep on Thursday (February 8, 2018) while on vacation with his wife, Mary, in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

Tom was born on February 14, 1950 in Newton, the son of Walter and Marilynn Lehr Collier. He graduated from Newton High School in 1968.  He married Mary Wetschensky on 11/11/1972 in Newton, KS. Together they owned and operated the Good Earth General Store in Newton from 1977 until 1994.  Tom worked at Prestressed Concrete in Newton as a chief  draftsman and CAD designer for 38 years, retiring in 2012. He was a founding member of the Chisholm Trail Festival, serving on the Board of Directors for several years. He was a former member of the Newton Lion’s Club, having served as a leader and club President. He was awarded the Melvin Jones Award.

Tom had a love of motorcycles and computers, he was a member of the MAC Wichita Club. He hosted the Newton Railers Class of ’68 website which helped keep all of his peers rockin’ and rollin’. Tom was the driving force behind many of his class reunions. He enjoyed being an active member of The Tuesday Lunch Gang aka TALKO.

Tom was the beloved husband to Mary; brother to Beth (Gary) Wonders; uncle to Shawn and Michael Wetschensky, Brian (Missy) Wonders and Jeff Wonders, Taylor and Walker Farnham; great uncle to Keaton Wetschensky, Lauren and Landry Wonders; son-in-law to Ethel Wetschensky; brother-in-law to Sandy Garred (Duane Farnham) and Susie Garred; and was a kind and generous friend to many.

A Celebration of Tom’s life will be held on Sunday (February 25, 2018) from 1:00pm until 4:00pm at the American Legion Post in Newton. A strict dress code will be enforced and NO ties are allowed.

Tom was known for his incredible wit, his huge heart and his love of live. “Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em.”

In lieu of flowers a memorials have been established with KPTS Channel 8 in Wichita and the Newton Public Library, contributions may be sent to Broadway Colonial Funeral Home, 120 E. Broadway, Newton, Ks. 67114.

Condolences may be left at

Arrangements are by Broadway Colonial Funeral Home, Newton.

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02/14/18 11:37 AM #1    

Robert Hurley

You will be dearly missed. Our group will never be the same.Some day we will be together again.

02/14/18 09:09 PM #2    

Kim Saylor

Tom and I have come a long way together in our lives. From living next door to each other in High School, to being rescued from his roof in the flood, and to planning all the class reunions. When he retired he started meeting some friends at Eastgate Lanes for tacos on Tuesdays. He invited me to join and that evolved into our Talko Tuesday lunch group. I will cherish the times I spent with him and the others. We used one another as sounding boards and respected each others opinions, most of the time. It seems like we were always in touch.

But all that has changed. I miss my friend more than words can express. I have found comfort in knowing he was happy and enjoying himself with Mary when he passed. I hope I can stay grounded without his sound advice and counsel. Goodbye old friend, it looks like you are going on ahead but I will catch up.

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