Reverend Thomas L. Zeleny (1943-2021)
ZELENY, WHITTENBAUGH, SALEMI
Posted By: Ken Wright (email)
Date: 8/23/2021 at 11:59:55
Reverend Thomas L. Zeleny, age 77, of Wilton, Iowa, passed away Thursday, August 5, 2021, at the Lutheran Home, Muscatine. A visitation will be held from 2:00 - 5:00 p.m.,Sunday, August 8, 2021 at Bentley Funeral Home, Wilton. A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m., Monday, August 9, 2021 at the Wilton United Methodist Church. A graveside service will be held at 2:30 p.m., following the funeral service in Pleasant Hill Cemetery, Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. Memorials may be given to the Wilton United Methodist Church or Compassus Hospice in his memory.
Tom was born on August 7, 1943 in Cheyenne, Wyoming, the son of Louis and Helen (Jones) Zeleny. He attended Sacred Heart High School and graduated with the Class of 1961. After high school, Tom proudly served his country in the United States Air Force from 1962-1966, including two years in Vietnam. Following the Air Force, Tom attended and graduated from Upper Iowa University. He then continued his education at St. Paul's Theology School, graduating in 1983. Tom married Connie Whittenbaugh on August 10, 1968 in Fayette, Iowa.
In his early years, Tom worked in sales, including department stores, automobiles and life insurance. He was a devout Christian and went into the ministry, where he served God as a United Methodist Pastor for 34 years before retiring in 2014. Tom served at many different locations, including Smith Chapel and Blackwater in Missouri, Lamoni, Decatur, Davis City, Mt. Union, Morning Sun, Wesley Chapel, LaPorte City, Wilton, High Prairie and Kingston, all in Iowa. Tom was a member of the American Legion in Wilton and the Lions Club, International. Tom was also a volunteer fireman and first responder for over twenty years. He enjoyed fishing, gardening, traveling and volunteering. Most of all, he cherished spending time with his family.
Tom will be dearly missed by his wife, Connie; two children, Amy (Tony) Salemi of McHenry, Illinois and Chad (Krystal) Zeleny of Mt. Pleasant; five grandchildren, Joe and Chris Salemi, Derek Zeleny, Samantha (Ross Heitmeier) Zeleny and Reece Coffman; two sisters, Carolyn Kirn of Anaheim, California and Rosemary Rundell of Manhattan, Kansas; and a special family friend, Missi (Roger) Bain of Mt. Pleasant.
Tom was preceded in death by his parents; and one brother in-law, Dale Kirn.
Henry Obituaries maintained by Constance McDaniel Hall.
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