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Born Nov. 18, 1953 near Lilbourn, Mo. Charles Thomas “Tom” Laird, son of Floyd and Alma Lucille Humphrey Laird, was born Nov. 18, 1953 near Lilbourn, Mo. He departed this life Thursday, June 1, 2006, due to heart failure resulting in an automobile accident in Webster County.
On Jan. 16, 1971, Tom married Debbie Delp. To this union two sons and two daughters were born.
On Nov. 2, 1997 he was united in marriage to Barbara Elaine Clark Downs. They have shared the last 10 years together near Mansfield.
He was preceded in death by his father and a brother, Bobby Laird.
Tom is survived by his wife, Barbara, of the home; eight children, including Michelle Bass, Mindy Laird and Charles “TJ” Laird, Jr., all of Hartville, Brian Laird, of Flippin, Ark., Keith Downs, of Everett, Wash., Matthew Downs, of Mansfield, Melanie Pierce, of Show Low, Ariz., and Monica Dunne, of Collegedale, Tenn.; 15 grandchildren and one great-granddaughter; his mother, Alma Lucille Laird, of Mansfield; three brothers, Billy Laird, of Crawford, Tenn., Raymond Laird, of Sikeston, and Don Laird, of Belleville, Ill.; four sisters, Betty McKeel and Ruby Herbst, both of Mansfield, Janet Carrell, of Labadie, Mo., and Shirley Garner, of Monett; 19 nieces and nephews; and his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Charles and Frances Clark, of Frankfort, Ill.; as well as a host of other relatives and many friends.
Tom was born and raised in the Bootheel of Missouri. As a young man he went to Bellville, Ill., where he apprenticed as an electrician and then worked wiring barges on the Mississippi River. Twenty-five years ago he moved to Wright County, where he owned and operated Laird and Associates, a general remodeling construction company.
Playing music was one of Tom’s favorite pastimes. He spent many years as a professional musician playing the guitar and singing in a progressive country band throughout Missouri, Louisiana and Texas. He will always be remembered for the heart and soul that he put into his music.
In his spare time, Tom found great pleasure working with wood in his workshop.
Tom also loved being out in nature. He had a special passion to share his love of the outdoors with his children.
Funeral services were held at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday at Holman-Howe Chapel, Hartville, with the Rev. Larry Scott officiating, and Juanita Herrell, eulogist. Burial was in New Hope Cemetery.