Walter Werner Tuomi, 86, passed away at his home on Wednesday, May 20, 2020. Walt was born in Chassell, MI on May 26, 1933 to Michael and Hilda Tuomi.
Walt grew up in Chassell on the family farm raising a several pet chickens and a crow as a young boy. Walt attended school in Chassell, MI. By the time Walt was 16 he was into cars. His friends could always find him working on a car, constantly tinkering. Walt joined the Army on May 7, 1953. He was discharged on May 6, 1955 with a rank of PFC(T) from Fort Lewis, WA.
In 1959 Walt married Kathryn Virtanen. They had six children together. Walt started at the White Pine Copper Mine on March 24, 1960. In 1960 Walt rode the company bus from his home in the copper country to White Pine but after a few years the family moved to Green then onto White Pine. Eventually, the family settled in Ontonagon where Walt resided until his death.
On August 1, 1985 Walt married Nancy Geist. Walt retired from the copper mine on September 10, 1993. Nancy and Walt enjoyed many years together until she passed away in 2015. Later in life Walt loved to spend his free time in his garage working on his cars or anything mechanical. He installed a “push button” starter on one of his cars long before the auto industry started using them. He waited each year with excitement for the Labor Day Auto show, complaining often that he should have kept one of the old cars he had in the 1950’s, they would have been worth a fortune today!
Throughout Walt’s life he enjoyed gardening, fishing and camping. He loved riding his motorcycle around Ontonagon and later that became a scooter. Walt always looked forward to his coffee clutch group and outings with Little Brother’s friends of the elderly. Walt was also a Golden Age member of the Eagles Club.
Walt is preceded in death by Kathryn and Nancy, his parents Michael and Hilda Tuomi, brothers Carl, Raymond, Leonard and Kenneth Tuomi, Sisters Julia Hongisto and Erma Haarola and his sons Steven and Darren Tuomi.
Walt is survived by his daughters Dawn Tuomi, St. Petersburg, FL, Laura (Duane) Roehm, Menominee, MI, Gail (Bob) Peterson, Ontonagon, MI and Melanie Butina, St Petersburg, FL. Walt had nine grandchildren: Melissa Tuomi, Jillian and Cody Roehm, Rachel Tuomi, Ryan Peterson, Heather Solberg, Mitchell and Dylan Butina and Desiree Tuomi. His great grandchildren are Bronson Seehafer, Danae Sandy, Maddox, Kingston and Ariah Solberg.
A grave side celebration of life will be held at Riverside Cemetery in Ontonagon on July 13, 2020 at 11am.
Cane Funeral Home is assisting the family with final arrangements.
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