Thomas “Tom” Edward Oxley, Sr.

2021_11_20 12_52 PM Office Lens

July 31, 1952 – November 13, 2021

Thomas “Tom” Edward Oxley, Sr., age 69, of Overland Park passed away at his home on November 13, 2021 surrounded by his loving family.

Tom began a life full of passion and humor when he was born to his parents Jerry Eugene Oxley II and Lena Virginia Farris Oxley in Excelsior Springs, MO on July 31, 1952. He became the youngest of six and the fifth of five boys. 

He grew up in this active household first in Hardin, MO in a tiny two-bedroom house where the kids all shared one bedroom. The family eventually found more space when they moved to a house on Denver Avenue on the East Side of Kansas City. 

Tom, often known as “Tommy” and “Thomas Eddy” was the last to leave the house after graduating from East High School in 1970. He went on to begin his career in tire recycling at Beck Tire in Kansas City, MO. Tom would be the first to let you know he worked every day of his life from age 15 on. His work ethic was one of his best qualities. 

Tom and his first wife Barabara Smith, married on August 23, 1975 in Raytown, MO, welcomed their one son together in June of 1976, Thomas “TJ” Edward Oxley, Jr. Tom and Barbara raised TJ alongside her four other children, Tammy, Kenny, Shaun, and Sandy Howery. Tom proudly raised these kids as their step-father for several years, even now they still affectionately call him “Dad.” Tom continued to be a huge influence in TJ and his former stepkids’ lives. Tom and TJ spent many weekends going to movies and Royal’s games. On one notorious afternoon, TJ and his dad got to spend 17 innings watching the Royals. At this game, they got to meet the likes of George Brett with Tom even taunting him a bit. 

After spending years on the road for Beck Tire, Tom’s career took him to Florida Tire Recycling in Port St. Lucie, FL around 1993. These four years not only gave Tom a deep tan that would last him the rest of his life, but was where Tom gained lifelong sobriety. Tom credited his good friend Jack Wilson in Florida as the man who helped him become sober and save his life.

In 1996, Tom came back to his roots in Kansas City and continued his involvement with Alcoholics Anonymous and worked the 12 Steps that gave him a new lease on life. At an AA meeting that fall, Tom would meet the woman he would spend the rest of his life with, Catherine “Cathy” Lynn Young. They met while decorating for Christmas. With his Tom Selleck style mustache and heavy leather jacket, Cathy won his attention above all others. On one cold fall evening soon after they had their first date at The Olive Garden and the sparks flew. 

Tom and Cathy would then marry on June 21, 1997. Who would have guessed, but they welcomed Tom’s second child in September of 1998, John “Jack” Thomas Oxley. Tom thanked God every day that He gave him another son later in life. In this new chapter of his fatherhood, Tom and Jack, the two “bubbas,” spent many summer breaks and weekends in Tom’s straight truck traveling to every corner of the metro and the Midwest. Tom would also never pass up the opportunity to go to breakfast and coffee on a Saturday morning with Jack.

After attaining sobriety, Tom Oxley’s proudest achievement was beating cancer several times. This included first a 14-cm tumor on his liver and then Stage II lymphoma. To the end, nothing made Tom happier than to spend many weekends and holidays with his wife, his boys, and his grandsons.

Tom is survived by his wife, Cathy Oxley of Overland Park, KS, his sons, TJ Oxley of Smithville, MO, and Jack Oxley of Kansas City, MO; three grandsons, Zach Connors, Jay Oxley, and Ty Oxley of Smithville, MO; four former step-children, Tammy, Kenny, Shaun, and Sandy Howery of Kansas City, MO; along with many nieces, nephews, friends, and extended family.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Jerry and Lena Oxley and five siblings, Kenneth L. DeMint, Loren P. DeMint, Sr., Paula Sue (DeMint) Soldanels, Jerry E. Oxley, III, and Wayne C. DeMint, Sr.


A visitation will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, December 2, 2021 at Church of the Ascension in Overland Park, KS with a Funeral Mass being held after at 10:00 a.m. at the church. The burial will be held afterwards Mt. Olivet Catholic Cemetery in Raytown, MO and is open to anyone who would like to attend. A luncheon will be held at the Church once the family returns from the burial, at approximately 12 p.m.


The family asks that any contributions be made in his memory to the Liver Transplant Program at the University of Kansas Health System. Any flowers can be sent to the Church at the time of the funeral.


  1. Louky Petigna on January 4, 2022 at 11:14 pm

    Cathy, I am so sorry to learn of your husband’s passing. May God grant him eternal rest.

  2. Skye Ray on January 4, 2022 at 10:46 am

    To a great man that inspired the world

  3. Jack Oxley on November 25, 2021 at 11:19 am

    I love you Bubba, you were the finest man I ever knew. I pray for you every day and will always remember you. You taught me how to not just say “I love you,” but how to show it through action.

  4. Kathy Goeckeler Inness on November 24, 2021 at 5:46 am

    Tommy you were like a protective big brother to Ted, Doug, & me. We’re all gonna miss you in the family and at Church. I was really glad we got to talk that last Sunday you were there. Say howdy to all the family for us!

  5. Sheri Helms on November 22, 2021 at 5:54 pm

    Thoughts and prayers with this amazing man’s family

  6. Terry and Norma Sulzberger on November 22, 2021 at 4:31 pm

    Our family sends sincerest condolences to all of you. Cherish your memories of good times family outings. We will keep you in our thoughts and prayers.

  7. TJ Oxley on November 22, 2021 at 4:09 pm

    I love you Dad. It’s never going to be the same without you here. Thank you for always being able to make me smile and laugh. You made me proud of you and I’m grateful for that.

    • George Johnson on November 24, 2021 at 1:27 pm

      My condolences to the Oxley Family in the passing of your loved one Tom. He was a great inspiration at the Durham Bus company as we all observed him consistently and daily walking slowly to his bus to perform his monitoring duties and never complaining about his health condition. Praying for you Oxley Family.

  8. Maggie Arnone and Family on November 22, 2021 at 3:37 pm

    This was beautifully written for a beautiful man. So blessed to have known him as long as I did. He will be dearly missed. All of our thoughts and prayers for the Oxley family.

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