Thomas Alan Konakowitz
ROCHESTER – Thomas Alan Konakowitz, 72, of Rochester, MN died peacefully at his home on July 11, 2013 of heart failure.
He was born in New Ulm, MN on May 17, 1941 to Willard Schroeder and Tena Konakowitz. He was raised by his loving mother, Tena and step-father, Adolph Konakowitz. Tom graduated from New Ulm High School in 1959 and the Minneapolis School of Electrical Engineering. Tom married the love his life, Diane Arndt on October 19, 1963 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in New Ulm. He joined IBM in 1963 and had a thriving career. He enjoyed his profession and especially all the people he had the opportunity to meet and work with. Tom just celebrated his 50th year of service at IBM. He continued to work as a consultant for IBM until his death. Tom lived a life of love, laughter, a loving family and lots of tasty food. He lived a life of intention, integrity with a giving spirit. He was an avid hockey fan. He volunteered over 25 years with Rochester Youth Hockey and was the chairman of the fundraising to build the Graham Arena Ice Complex for which he was honored by Rochester Youth Hockey. Graham Arena 3 was named the “Tom Konakowitz Rink” in his honor. He served in many different capacities at Grace Lutheran Church which included chairing the building committee.
Tom’s passion was doing things with his family, planning projects and trips with his grandkids and especially golfing and fishing with “the boys”. We will all miss his gourmet cooking and his buddies will certainly miss his “pickled northern”. Tom was famous for the dozens and dozens of goodies that he made every year at Christmas time to be shared with all his family and friends.
Tom is survived by his wife, Diane; two children, Mark (Tami) Konakowitz and Jill Marie (Sam) Hilleshiem; two grandchildren, Rena Marie Hilleshiem “My Little Sweetheart” and Luke Samuel Thomas Hilleshiem “My Buddy” all of Rochester, MN; and five sisters, Renee Schilman of Eagan, MN, Kathryn Runck of Winthrop, MN, Susan (Dennis) Jacobs of New Ulm, MN, Janet (Mike) Dalluge of New Ulm, MN and Julia (Gerald) Rieger of New Ulm, MN. Tom was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Gerald.
A funeral service will be held on Sunday, July 14, 2013 at 1:00 p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church, located at 800 East Silver Lake Drive NE in Rochester. Visitation will be held from 4:00 to 7:00 on Saturday, July 13, 2013 at Ranfranz and Vine Funeral Homes with a visitation one hour prior to the service at the church on Sunday.
In lieu of flowers memorials can be directed to RYHA Scholarship fund, Grace Lutheran Church or the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation MN Chapter.
Ranfranz and Vine Funeral Homes 5421 Royal Place NW Rochester, MN 55901 (507) 289-3600 www.ranfranzandvinefh.com