Thomas L. Bartholomew, 44

Mar 9, 2021

Thomas L. Bartholomew, 44, of Marion died Monday, February 22, 2021 accidentally.

He is survived by his wife, Sharon of Marion; his children, Ella and Ben Bartholomew both of Marion; his parents, Mary and George Bartholomew both of Tucson, AZ; his sister, Kathy Bartholomew of Tucson, AZ; and his brother, Mike Bartholomew of S. Dartmouth.

Tom was born in New Bedford, son of Mary H. (Handy) and George Bartholomew. He grew up in Marion on the water—the ocean was in his blood from the start. As a kid he loved being outdoors: exploring in the woods, swimming, sailing, jet skiing, riding dirt bikes. Hockey and skiing in the winter. The Bartholomew family’s open-door policy meant that a gang of friends hung out all year-round.

Even from a young age, Tom had a way with people. He was soft-spoken with an easy, magnetic charm. But he was bold in his actions and quick to dare you to try something new. He was also naturally unselfish — whatever perks he had in life were shared without hesitation. His family and friends always came first.

Tom graduated from Old Rochester Regional High School in 1995. He met Sharon in high school, and the couple married in 2006. For their first three years together, they lived on their 40-foot sailboat and dreamed of someday raising their kids while traveling the world.

Ella was born in 2007 and Benjamin in 2010. Tom was an amazing father who focused on the important things in life. To him, the art of a good joke, appreciating nature, and building a proper campfire were all worthwhile lessons. His greatest joys were riding dirt bikes with Ben and teaching him how to play hockey, and teaching Ella how to sail the family’s 40-foot sailboat solo. They saw their dad as strong and fearless, courageous and kind.

Tom was one of those rare people who could actually live in the moment. He never passed up an adventure and tackled things no one else wanted to attempt. He liked all things planes, trains, and motorcycles, but his deep love of nature really defined him. Influenced by survivalist Tom Brown, he sought ways to live on the earth more simply. Injured animals often fell under his gentle care—he was a natural protector of anything or anyone needing help.

His father’s career in the railroad industry fostered in Tom a lifelong appreciation for and understanding of trains. As Chief Mechanical Officer for the Mass. Coastal Railroad, he was known for his mechanical know-how and thoughtful diligence. He was a hard worker who helped out wherever needed. For his coworkers, his memory will live on in the sound of train whistles carried by the breeze off the Cape Cod Canal.

He left us too soon, but we will never forget his boyish grin, quick wit, fierce loyalty, and golden heart. He taught his children that the universe speaks to us, you just have to listen. We’ll be listening, Tommy. We love you.

A celebration of Tom’s life will be planned for summer 2021.

Donations in his memory may be made to his children’s college funds, found here:  Benjamin Lee Bartholomew; Ella Marie Bartholomew

Arrangements by Chapman, Cole & Gleason Funeral Home, Wareham. To share a memory or leave a message of condolence, visit