Thomas J Parrish, age 66, transitioned peacefully from life to eternal life at his home In Odessa Texas on Sunday, May 21, 2023 in the midst of family. Burial will be Wednesday, May 24, 2023 at 1:00 pm at Sunset Memorial Gardens in Odessa, Texas. A Celebration of Life memorial service will be held on Monday, May 29, 2023 at 2:00 pm at Beit HaDerekh, located at 13370 Hwy 191, Midland, Texas 79701 (north service road between Midland and Odessa). Tom was born to Elizabeth Theresa (Betty) and his natural father, Lucileous Parrish in Hot Springs, Arkansas, on December 30, 1956. Betty later married his step-father, James Woodard. Eager to learn new things and be the best he could possibly be, Tom fulfilled all the requirements and became an Eagle Scout in March 1974. He graduated from Hobbs High School in 1975 and in 1976 he proudly committed to military service serving on nuclear power submarines in the United State Navy until 1982. After serving his country, he worked various oilfield service related jobs including repairing and delivering packers alongside his brother, Mike, at Caprock Packers and later he worked his way up to salesman for Rice Engineering which later became Duoline Technologies. Weary of the oilfield booms and busts, he returned to school to become a nurse. Tom became an RN in 2005 and worked in the ICU at Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, Texas. Being very attentive to his patients was his joy and his ministry was, “even if we couldn’t save the patient, maybe I can help the grieving family get through a rough time”. Following his retirement from nursing in July 2015, he felt God’s calling to help anyone needing a helping hand. He was always handy, innovative and eager to help a friend on any kind of project. He became a volunteer ambassador for Eight Days of Hope and assisted many families nationwide following hurricanes and floods. He mudded out numerous houses and participated in many rebuilds, all along witnessing to the victims of these devastating natural disasters and rejoicing when one willingly gave their life to Yeshua our Messiah! He acquired many friends around the country who also selflessly devoted their time to Eight Days of Hope. He loved his Beit HaDerekh Messianic community and willingly performed many tasks and functions around the church. No project was too big or small – he executed with a smile on his face! Tom also loved being outdoors and would rarely turn down a chance to go fishing or hunting. Married to Audrey on May 7, 1988, they enjoyed many road trips together across the United States. They loved exploring our beautiful national parks and were privileged to go to Israel in 2010 and also 2012. They also loved spending time together at their special little place in Cloudcroft, New Mexico surrounded by amazing friends, scenery and wildlife.
Tom is preceded in death by his parents, his mother-in-law Marilyn Cross and his brother-in-law Mickey Cross. He is survived by his loving wife of 35 years, Audrey, his brother Mike Parrish (Kathie), his sister, Kathleen Barricklow (Gary), his brother-in-law Eugene Cross (Janet), his father-in-law Cecil “Sam” Cross and also numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews. His fur baby cats, Callie Mae and Simcha, already sense his absence and miss him greatly.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the charity of your choice.
For the whole of the Torah is summed up in this one sentence: “Love your neighbor as yourself”. -Galatians 5:14