Cover photo for Thomas W. Parrish's Obituary
Thomas W. Parrish Profile Photo

Thomas W. Parrish

November 26, 1949 — January 6, 2021

Thomas W. Parrish

OKLAHOMA CITY Thomas W. Parrish joined his loved ones in Heaven on January 6, 2021. Tom was born on November 26, 1949 in Madill, Oklahoma to S.P. and Peggy Parrish. Tom grew up in Madill and was active in football, basketball and high school marching band while working in the family business at Parrish Electric & Plumbing. Upon graduating high school, he moved to Norman, OK to attend the University of Oklahoma. He became a member of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, and he remained in close contact with his brothers throughout the years. His love for OU, his fraternity and OU Football was fierce. After graduating college, he spent time in Dallas before moving back to Oklahoma to start a banking career in Madill and Ardmore. He spent forty years in the banking profession, serving as CEO of three different Oklahoma banks and on the board of The State of Oklahoma Banking Commission, as well as numerous corporate banking boards and several publicly traded corporate companies. Tom believed in serving his community. He served on the boards of the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, Integris Health Systems, Last Frontier Council of Boy Scouts (as President), Science Museum (as President), Oklahoma Banker's Association, President of Rotary Club (Ardmore, OK) and several other civil organizations in Oklahoma City. Tom was an active member of Rotary International, starting at the Rotary Club of Ardmore, and then moving to Club 29 in Oklahoma City which he joined in 1987. During his 31 years at this club, he served as Director of the Foundation Board, chaired several committees, and was a Paul Harris Fellow plus one. His love of his fellow Rotarians and Rotary's overall mission passed onto his daughter who is now a member of the Summit County Rotary Club in Colorado. Tom was a deeply engaged member of All Souls' Episcopal Church since 1989, where he served for more than a decade as the chair of the Outreach Committee, being instrumental in solidifying the parish's long-standing relationship with the Shiloh Camp and the Jesus House. He was a regular participant in the Men's Dinner Group and The Supper Club, and he also served as a Greeter and Usher to provide a warm welcome to people entering the church. As a Stephen Minister, he was trained to share Christ's love and care to those experiencing difficult times in life. Tom embraced life and finding the positive in situations, so much so, that the phrase "Positive Parrish" will live on through the lives of his family and friends. When Tom was diagnosed with Blastoid Variant Mantle Cell Lymphoma in June 2020, his spirits remained high. He enthusiastically agreed to contribute to medical research by participating in clinical trials for a treatment for this rare and aggressive cancer. He kept upbeat and had minimal side effects throughout his treatments, and he ultimately went into remission before his last chemo session in November. During Thanksgiving, he was able to spend time with his family who all had taken extreme safety and quarantine measures in order to be with him to celebrate his remission and his 71st Birthday which landed on Thanksgiving. Despite the remission, complications from the treatments took a toll on him and allowed him to join God in Heaven. Tom was preceded in death by his father, S.P. Parrish, Jr. and his mother, Peggy Joyce Parrish. He is survived by his two children; son, Scott Parrish and his wife Jess (Oklahoma City) and daughter, Lynne Parrish Baer and her husband Rob, and granddaughter Brooke (Silverthorne, CO); siblings, brother Rick Parrish and wife Carolyn (Patrobe, PA) and sister, Jennifer Parrish Atkins and husband Randy (Pittsburg, TX); nieces, Michelle Parrish Woford (Oklahoma City), Rosalie Fairbanks (Rockwall, TX) and Laura Rowley (Longview, TX) and nephew, Craig Parrish (Oklahoma City); as well as their children, extended family members, and many dear friends. In lieu of flowers, the family requests any donations be made to the Rotary Club 29 Foundation (email cheryl@okcrotary.com or call 405.235.5100) or a Memorial Gift to All Souls' Episcopal Church (visit www.allsoulsokc.com/give or call 405.842.1461). A private family service will be held at All Souls' on Monday, January 11th at 11am. Guests are invited to join a livestream at m.facebook.com/allsoulsokc/live, please "arrive" early. (A Celebration of Life will be planned for a later date when we can safely join together and remember all the good times we've collectively shared with Tom).
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Private Memorial Service

Monday, January 11, 2021

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