Thomas H. Niemi, age 78, of Harrison, Michigan, died Monday morning, July 20, 2020 at Mill Creek Assisted Living in Marquette following a six-month illness. He was born on August 30, 1941 in Detroit, Michigan to the late Eino and Ethel (Alto) Niemi. Tom’s family moved to the Niemi family farm when he was thirteen and he graduated from Eben High School in 1959. He attended Northern Michigan University and graduated in 1963. Tom began his teaching career at Plymouth-Canton High School where he taught history and coached varsity basketball. He married Patricia Rule and together they raised their son, Chris. Although their marriage did not last, they remained friends and co-parents throughout their lives. Tom retired from his teaching career from the Belleville School Systems where he also taught history and coached basketball. He married the love of his life, Pamala Rigley. They retired and moved to Elbow Lake in Harrison where she volunteered caring for animals at the shelter and Tom travelled on his motorcycle, golfed, and hunted. They spent twenty-five years together before she preceded him in death on May 18, 2013. Tom was a quiet man who enjoyed spending time at his home in his own company.
Tom is survived by his aunt – Bertha Alto of Eben Junction and cousins – Keith (Dianne) Alto, Kenneth (Jackie) Alto, Kim (Barb) Salmela, Kevin (Kate Kenney) Salmela, and Darrin Rockwood. He was preceded in death by his parents Eino and Ethel, his son Chris Niemi and his mother Patricia Niemi, and his wife Pamala Niemi.
No public services will be held and if anyone would like to make a memorial donation, it is suggested to be to a charity of one’s choice.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Thomas H. Niemi, please visit our floral store.