Tommie Joe Fox was born on January 11, 1933 in Winner, South Dakota to Thomas Fox and Kate (Scott) Fox. Tommie attended school in the Mission area until he dropped out in the 9th grade to help with the family ranches due to his father’s poor health.
Tommie married Dorothy Lee Dvorak on November 7, 1952. They lived and ranched on the ranch where he grew up north of Mission, South Dakota for many years. This ranch has been in the Fox family for almost 100 years. Tommie and Dorothy raised four children on the ranch and always seemed to have lots of family and friends visiting. Everyone gathered there as it was referred to as the “Home Place”.
Tommie loved the land, cattle and horses. He was a true cowboy in every sense of the word. He enjoyed ranch life and visiting with friends, neighbors, and family. He was witty and loved to talk, tell stories, and make people laugh. He also enjoyed attending rodeos and horse sales. In fact, in his younger years, Tommie Joe was quite the bronc rider and very proud of winning First Place among 40 contestants at a rodeo in the area. He cherished the belt buckle he won that day.
In the 1990’s his wife Dorothy’s declining health made it necessary to move to Winner to be close to doctors. Tommie did not like town life and traveled to the ranch almost daily. Eventually Dorothy was moved to the Winner Nursing Home and Tommie to the Elder Inn Assisted Living. Tommie was a faithful husband and visited Dorothy in the nursing home every morning and evening as long as he was able to do so.
In 2011 Tommie and Dorothy entered a nursing home in Lakewood, Colorado to be close to their daughter, Cindy, and her family. When Dorothy passed away in 2012 Tommie moved to a small Assisted Living facility with a home like environment where he resided until he passed away peacefully on September 24th after a long bout with Alzheimer’s disease.