A celebration of life for retired Lt. Col. William Thomas (Tom) Slye Jr., 82, of Belton, will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday at Christ the King Catholic Church in Belton, with Fr. James Misko officiating. Burial with full military honors will follow at 1 p.m. at the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery in Killeen.
Mr. Slye died Feb. 28, 2018, at the Creekside Terrace Rehabilitation Center after a long, courageous struggle with Parkinson’s disease. He was born on June 12, 1935, to Elizabeth Wallmeyer Slye and William Thomas Slye Sr. in Washington, D.C.
Mr. Slye served 28 years, primarily in the U.S. Army, as a highly decorated helicopter pilot, Master Army Aviator and transportation logistics officer. He served three tours in Vietnam as a combat helicopter pilot; and flew in the Presidential Helicopter unit for both President Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard M. Nixon administrations.
His career also included commanding a Cobra helicopter company and the last active-duty unit of the CH-54 Skycrane helicopter unit in Germany.
Mr. Slye married the love of his life, Wanda Rose Bridges, in 1957 and together toured the world, serving their country and raising three children; Michael, Teresa and Sandra. Upon retirement, they settled in Belton, where they have lived for the past 11 years, actively involved in their church, Knights of Columbus (4th Degree), neighborhood and community.
Mr. Slye was preceded in death by his parents, sister Anne Costis and brother Jim Slye. He is survived by his wife, Wanda, of Belton, son Mike and his wife, Cindy, of Trophy Club; daughter Teri and her husband, Gilbert, of Fredericksburg; and daughter Sandie and her husband, Jim, of Vernon; five grandsons and 11 great-grandchildren.
Visitation and rosary will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday at Dossman Funeral Home in Belton, which is in charge of arrangements. In lieu of flowers, please send donations in Mr. Slye’s name to St. Jude’s Children Research Hospital — leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases.
To make a contribution, visit https://shop.stjude.org/GiftCatalog/donation.do?cID=14262&pID=24671&sc_icid=home-btn-donate-now
To leave an online condolence, visit http://www.dossmanfh.com/.