THOMAS JAMES WHALEY
Chapel of Kimberly Centre, Levin, N.Z.
on Thursday, 18 July, 1996 at 2.00 P.M.
HYMN; The Lord's my Shepherd.
READINGS; Psalm 121,----Mark 10,-- 46-52.
HYMN; There is a green hill.
Tom, unlike Bartimaeus, wasn't healed in this life. However, he can now see Jesus and enjoy the life of Eternity unfettered by any handicap.
For me, one of the greatest strengths of Christianity is that in the Jesus' ministry each individual, no mater what their disability, was worthy of his individual attention. It is interesting that, once Jesus recognized the blind man, the people who had told him to keep quite were suddenly on his side. I find it rather disquieting that after, years in the shadows, caring for people with a disability has suddenly become a growth industry. And this is at a time when our Government and it's bureaucracy seem to have adopted the old Marxist dictum, "If you want to make an omelet you have to break a few eggs", a far cry from trying to put Humpty Dumpty together again, which seems closer to our calling here at Kimberly.
To return to Tom who is the focus of our service today, Judy Brunning is now going to share with us her memories of Tom.
Murray spoke; of Tom's early life.
The Chaplain continued; as I have talked with staff who have cared for and known Tom, I am left with a number of pictures.
#1--The first is an individual who, though totally dependent on others had his own unique personality which always shone through.
#2--In a second, a staff member talked of smiles and hugs when Tom was able to go out and enjoy walking with a staff escort.
#3--Another picture is of a man who could be hard on himself and yet was genuinely likeable.
#4--Other pictures are of the dancing man when a sympathetic staff member could shuffle him round the floor to the current music, and that was as recent as a year ago.
#5--A man with a genuine wicked sense of humor.
So Tom, you have left your mark on us as we have on you. Go in peace. Chaplain D. Nicholas
SUMMARY of my COMMENTS and THOUGHTS;
Delivered at Thomas' Funeral by his brother Murray Whaley.
It is sad that it was not Tom's role to lead a high profile and productive life. However, he certainly made an impact with those with whom he came in contact. Firstly, his parents and family, with whom he lived at home through his early life up until the age of 25 years. Mother and Father provided him with total loving care with great dedication and sacrifice. Tom's physique and looks were that of Scandinavian descent--strong and blonde. His main love was for music which our mother provided by spending many hours at the piano playing a repertoire of melodies and ballads from the 1930's--1950's. This soothed Tom's ragged nerves and generally gave him much pleasure.
When our parents moved to be near Tahuna Beach in Nelson, Tom enjoyed collecting firewood for the wood and coal range and copper. He would run at random and had a good time splashing in the surf. Car movement also gave him much pleasure.
As well as being strong, he had a will of his own as Judy said in her comments, and my mother and father who was slight, found handling him difficult at times.
Tom was eventually accepted into Kimberly Hospital and Training School in 1958 so he has been in your predecessors, or your good care for some 38 years.
Mum and Dad took many pilgrimages to Kimberley to see Tom and to give him a run along the nearby beaches. I know that they were thrilled with the care and attention given him and had a great rapport with Staff Nurses and caregivers at that time. In fact, they made many firm friendships at Kimberley.
After my parents passing, I took over as Tom's formal Welfare Guardian and I can attest to the high standard of care giving which Tom received from you folk in order to make his life bearable.
On behalf of Tom, my sister, Anne and myself I most sincerely thank you, one and all. Also for arranging this friendly and touching service.
N.B. Tom's ashes will be interred with his mother and father as was their wish, at the Marsden Valley Cemetery in Stoke, Nelson.