Tommy'sEyes
Tommy Henry Paduano Wartell
  • 33 years old
  • Date of birth: Aug 5, 1981
  • Place of birth:
    Chicago, Illinois, United States
  • Date of passing: Aug 27, 2014
  • Place of passing:
    Naperville, Illinois, United States
"I just want to tell everyone I love how special it is how they have touched my life, and the grief and sorrow of loss is better than a life without love." Tommy 2013

This memorial website was created in memory of our beloved son,Tommy Paduano Wartell, 33, born on August 5, 1981 and passed away on August 27, 2014. May this site help the memory of Tommy to be with us forever,
     .OBITUARY: Thomas “Tommy” Henry Paduano – Wartell passed away unexpectedly on August 27th at age 33. Thomas was the dear son of Thomas E and Margaret (Peg) Wartell; loving husband of Gerald “Jerry” Paduano – Wartell; beloved brother of Catherine “Katie” (Aaron) Hines.  He was also a wonderful nehew and cousin, and a treasured friend to many people. He will be deeply missed! Two of Tommy’s passions in life were gardening and horticulture.  The Wartell property bears witness to his genius. His family is very proud of his accomplishments, most notably chartering the Gay – Straight Alliance “GSA” at Naperville Central High School during his time there. Visitation for him will be Monday September 1st from 4-8 at Leonard Memorial Home, 565 Duane St. Glen Ellyn. A funeral mass will be Tuesday 11 AM at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church 393 N. Main St., Glen Ellyn. Interment will be private.

Thomas Henry Wartell              
                                          GREEN EYES

 Look into my eyes....look deeper? They are green like those of my departed grandmother. All she ever wanted was for my happiness so she took me as is. What a wonderful sort of love. I think we all get passed over by suitors and suckered by smarmy con artists. The one thing you should never sell is your integrity. If you stay true to yourself and show all your cards in a "take it or leave it" gesture it can lead to wonderful things like eternal love. The love she had for my grandfather (Henry) echoes throughout the family line as the most beautiful thing you can have. When I say I love you I am saying I love you "as is" we have no guarantees I'm the mortal coil the best we can do is love much and love deeply. The great thing about love is that you can do it over and over again. Love is what binds the world together and it stops hate from ripping it apart. I think sometimes we have to stop and think how many people love us as we are. Every cloud can have a silver lining if you want and rain makes the flowers grow. I just want to tell everyone I love how special it is how they have touched my life and the grief and sorrow of loss is better than a life without love. 

Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by Mary Ann Collins on 27th August 2016

"Your life, your smile,
your voice and silliness too,
The memories live on in the
mind and heart of the life that was you.
Thank you
for honoring so many lives like mine
that's a tribute to you.
on this day eternal life
began for you."

This tribute was added by Dave Kent on 27th August 2016

"I recall starting aviation school under Tom Sr's. flight instruction in Chicago, and learning that Peg was about to have their second child. You can imagine the joy and slaps on the back when Tom came back the 6th of August: a little boy! Years later on a visit to the Wartell River House to join Tom in a little angling at the riverfront, I saw a beautifully- arranged fountain and pool surrounded by flowers and other plants. I asked how they had done something so amazing and Tom replied that Tommy had created and finished the whole thing. It was then that I realized that Tommy possessed what to me was that wondrous gift of taking the mundane and turning it into a thing of beauty. I can't help but think that he did that not just with nature, but in his family over the years, too. Memories are some of the best gifts to leave with your loved ones--they never grow old. Tommy certainly left many of them."

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 22nd August 2016

"We had a delightful visit. Tommy met a friend online seven years ago. She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her wonderful husband Trent.  They came to see us this past weekend, and it was like having a piece of Tommy back home with us.  They are a lovely young couple and talking to them about their lives, and about Tommy was very good for our souls. Trent loves to fish, and our River House was in great form. Large carp, and small blue gill, and even some large and small mouth bass were caught.  Jamie is an artist, so a trip to the art institute with Tom, was inspirational for her. Thank you, Trent and Jamie for visiting. We really enjoyed having you here.  Love, Tom and Peg"

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 14th August 2016

"A line from a Joni Mitchell song keeps going through my head:

"Don't it always seem to go, that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone.""

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 13th August 2016

"Liz, Jeff, Kathy, and Brad,
  Thank you so much for leaving tributes for Tommy's birthday. As Brad's tribute mentioned "love creates memories that no one can steal." Around Tommy's birthday the memories come fast and furious. Some with a chuckle, and some with a tear, but all with the knowledge that we were blessed to have Tommy in our lives.  Thank you for sharing your memories with us!   PEG"

This tribute was added by Brad Collins on 7th August 2016

"Tommy was an amazing guy .. the kind who could light up the room as soon as he entered. Since I saw him so infrequently, it always amazed me that he would talk with me, or anyone, so easily. as if we had just seen each other the day before. Our priest recently offered a nice thought: Death leaves a hurt that will never heal, but love creates memories that no one can steal. We all have so many great memories of Tommy that will last forever!
With prayers for Tommy and the rest of the Wartells,  
     -Brad"

This tribute was added by Kathy Wartell Sullivan on 6th August 2016

"Thinking of our wonderful Tommy today with sadness  and love.  I see his picture every day and remember him with tenderness and a smile.  And always, always with gratitude  for his loving presence."

This tribute was added by Jeff Benedek on 5th August 2016

"Happy Birthday Tommy. I often think of you and your family with happiness!"

This tribute was added by Liz Westen on 5th August 2016

"Today would have been Tommy's 35th birthday.  He lives on in his garden at the River House and in the hearts of all who love and miss him.  Happy Birthday Tommy."

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 4th June 2016

"Its the time we are out in Tommy's gardens. The beautiful pink peonies have opened and the are gorgeous.  The blooms are so big and each year we are blessed with more. Tommy brought them from Grandma and Papa's garden in Wonder Lake. Next to them are the poppies. Large red blooms, with black centers!  Tommy planted them for their uniquness and their double meaning.  I can no longer work outside due to my health (no bending) but Tom is superb, and has become an excellent gardener.  As a tribute to Tommy we bought a wonderful statue.  His name is Saint Fiacre.  He is the Saint of gardens, and sits in my birthday garden.  Tom and Jerry set it up for me years ago. He looks over impatients, and colleus and our little pond.  The pond with its water plants and fountain will come to fruition in August.  So, thank you Tommy for our lovely garden for out River House.  I feel close to you when I am out there.  Please keep inspiring us, we need it!
Love, Mama"

This tribute was added by Muffy Paquette on 8th January 2016

"To my dear friends,
I am so saddened to have just learned of Tommy's death. I know he was such a true and genuine person, living the life that was meant to be and sharing it with all those who loved him.
My deepest sympathies. I know Tommy's light will live on in all those who knew him and loved him."

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 25th December 2015

"MERRY CHRISTMAS from heaven.  I often talk to Tommy in heaven, so how can I presume that he doesn't listen to me!  The wonders he must experiencing goes beyond our understanding. But, this Christmas and always, lets rejoice with him, and hold him close in our hearts."

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 15th December 2015

"Thank you for being a shining light in our lives Aunt Kathy!  I don't know how we would have walked this very difficult path without you.
Love Always, Tom and Peg"

This tribute was added by Kathy Wartell Sullivan on 15th December 2015

"Candle in our hearts
Glowing with love for you
Forever burning bright.             Shine on, Tommy"

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 15th December 2015

"Sue,
You are a beautiful writer. Thank you for your words of hope and joy at this holiday season. I know many people have a hard time coming to  forever missed, but my son is HERE in many ways. The joyful pictures show how he loved life. He was certainly worrisome, and so much work to raise, but he was a joy. Your words were a great comfort. I feel he is going on with the Lord's work. Love, Ms. Peg"

This tribute was added by Susan Furlan Guglielmi on 15th December 2015

"I knew Tommy through Peg's stories - always told with that great deep chuckle. I know he was surrounded by love and humor and care and JOY! His joy is complete in the arms of the Lord and though your hearts may feel empty I pray that his spirit of love and joy will fill them as you had always poured it into him."

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 14th December 2015

"Your tribute warmed my heart. I know you think of Tommy,and I know he loved his Aunt LoLo. Byut I wouldn't necessarily think of cookie time. You're right it was a favorite time for him! No one doesn't love your cookies! Thank you for the memory, Sharing together is so important. Love, PEG"

This tribute was added by Lois Bochat on 13th December 2015

"Every year at this cookie baking time, I think of Tommy - quite the cookie liker = especially sugar cookies.  Whenever the family gets together, we all have memories of times when he was in the midst of things and enjoying being with family.  Now he is still a part of things, just not in the same way.  Much love"

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 13th December 2015

"Thank you Kitty for leaving a tribute I really appreciate it  Tommy really enjoyed meeting you at my parents house.  The Donlon's were always happy to have company.  He was so impressed that you lived in Canada.  When he got married, you thoughtfulness in sending the beautiful wooden house was wonderful.  Jerry has it now, and treasures it.  Love, Peg"

This tribute was added by Kathryn Tessier on 12th December 2015

"Thanks Peg and Tom for inviting me to this site.  All very touching tributes to Tommy's life and times.  A wonderful man, such a loss to us here, but we all shine on."

This tribute was added by Jerry Paduano on 2nd November 2015

"This is Jerry. One autumn, I told Tommy that it made me sad to see all the plants dying. He said,"They're not dead, they're just sleeping."  For some reason I remembered this moment today."

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 22nd October 2015

"MY  FLOWER PRINCE           ( at his wake)

He couldn’t work full time
Often he could not work at all.
His bipolar illness was very debilitating
And he spent many months on medication in a world of depression and sadness..
When I saw the flowers you sent as one last tribute to Tommy,
I was full of joy.
   My flower prince knew every name, Latin and English, of every flower surrounding him.
  He was a horticultural genius and you helped him say good bye in his beautiful special garden.
  Thank you.
  It was a very sad day, but all the wonderful flowers helped to honor our son."

This tribute was added by TOM x on 13th October 2015

"Tom

I am sorry that I never got to see your son grow up or be the kind of friend to you who stays in touch but I remember when both he and his sister were born and for all the troubles mentioned in Peg’s Post (“Our Family of Four”) in the “His Life” section of this site, I clearly remember the love you and her had for each other and felt for the children as well.

From what you and others have expressed here, it doesn’t sound as though any of that changed over the decades and all I can say about the loss of a loved one (let alone the loss of a child; even if that person is of an age to no longer be considered a youth, for they will always be your “child”), is that you carry within you and are often surrounded by people and even items, that carry within them, either the spirit (for the religious among us) or the warm recollection (for the more pragmatic) of that individual.

People do “live on” through their actions, their relationships and sometimes even through the items they used during their lifetime. (Which is why, in times past, watches, pens, even firearms were passed down from generation-to-generation; keeping “alive” the memory and good feelings about someone’s ancestor.) And it is those remembrances of the "things" that they (ancestor, sibling or child) "did" that will never allow them to fade from our minds or our hearts.

At the same time however, all of us, no matter how sad it might be, must forge on with our own lives and not live in past; for I am one who also believes that those who we have loved and lost in such ways, wouldn’t want our lives to stop but instead would want us to remember them in such a manner that our lives continue to be enriched by our having known them and that we strive to be better ourselves as we go forward, because we did know them.

But having once known both you and Peg, I sure that you will (if you haven’t already) achieve that balance and at the same time never forget the son you loved so much.

We live in an era where the “marvels of modern electronics” allows us to communicate with, keep track of, and remember others in ways that when we were growing up, we would have never thought possible. By the time that you and I went to high school together and socialized in college, letter writing in society was rapidly becoming passé. And by the time we went in various directions as adults, all of us became so busy that few of us had the time for much more than a quick and fleeting phone call; if that.

But now, when time is “flying by” even faster than before (flying being a subject near and dear to your heart), we finally have a means of expressing ourselves to one another that is not only convenient but because it is so simple, is also very effective and allows for people to share things like this and to have whatever is said here to survive, literally forever.

In fact, you actually say elsewhere here on these pages, that “this memorial website was created in memory of your beloved son” and you hope that it will “help the memory of Tommy to be with us forever”. I think that this is a great thing that you have done here and I am sure that it will achieve its goal.

But I am also sure that while it will help his memory to remain with others who knew him or who know you, that in reading the posts here from you and Peg, that even without it, he will never be forgotten by his close friends and family. And while not an important technical achievement like the creation of this site, that is a big part of something even more significant and part of what successful and loving parenting is all about. And in that respect, I think that goal was achieved as well.

TOMx"

This tribute was added by Peg Wartell on 4th October 2015

"Sept. 30, 2015           PENNIES FROM HEAVEN


  The other day, I told Tom, I miss our pennies from heaven. Though my little container is almost full, it has been awhile since we have found one. When Tommy first died, we would find a single penny all over the house. In the driveway, the kitchen, and in the living room.
     That evening Tom looked down on the wooden strip between the kitchen and hallway there was the penny I was hoping for earlier in the day.  What’s the date?   Yep!  1981.  ( The year Tommy was born)
      Last night I was in Tom and Jerry’s bedroom. It had been awhile.  I was just labeling some things, so I could move some stuff.  We will hire a painter soon, to paint upstairs.
     I looked down.  There was a single penny.  The year?

                                        2012

I started to tear up, and I said, “I get it Tommy, I miss him too.” Tom and Jerry were married on 2012 at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church. Jerry made his last years so special, and from heaven this was one way he could tell both of us."

This tribute was added by Cindy Oakes on 11th September 2015

"Tommy will be missed by a lot of ppl and I miss his witty charm..his good looks.....his kindness...his gentleness..his love of life and all his wonderfull attributes..I know he is  doing good work for the lord now:) Hugss to his parents and sister and praise God you were the best family he could have had..God bless you all:)"

This tribute was added by N Sam on 8th September 2015

"Dear Family of Tommy,

I'm sorry that you are experiencing the mourning of losing a love one. Many if not all of us has experienced this, but I would like to share a brief scripture that will may just bring you comfort.

(Revelation 21:4) And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.”


Thanks for reading."

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 6th September 2015

"These lyrics are from a Warren Zevon song, "Keep me in your Heart," found on his final album, "The Wind." He began recording the album shortly after he was diagnosed with inoperable cancer, and it was released just two weeks before his death on September 7, 2003.

Shadows are fallin' and I'm runnin' out of breath  
Keep me in your heart for a while
If I leave you it doesn't mean I love you any less
Keep me in your heart for a while

When you get up in the mornin' and you see that crazy sun
Keep me in your heart for a while
There's a train leavin' nightly called "When All is Said and Done"
Keep me in your heart for a while

Sha-lalala-lala-li-lalala-lo
Keep me in your heart for a while
Sha-lalala-lala-li-lalala-lo
Keep me in your heart for a while

Sometimes when you're doin' simple things around the house
Maybe you'll think of me and smile
You know I'm tied to you like the buttons on your blouse
Keep me in your heart for a while

Hold me in your thoughts
Take me to your dreams
Touch me as I fall into view
When the winter comes
Keep the fires lit
And I will be right next to you

Engine driver's headed north up to Pleasant Stream
Keep me in your heart for a while
These wheels keep turnin' but they're runnin' out of steam
Keep me in your heart for a while

Sha-lalala-lala-li-lalala-lo
Keep me in your heart for a while
Sha-lalala-lala-li-lalala-lo
Keep me in your heart for a while

Keep me in your heart for a while"

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 5th September 2015

"Dear visitors...please take a little time and leave a tribute.  It can be just a few words."

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 5th September 2015

"TOMMY AND THE KITTEN

Katie always wanted a kitten. Tom's friend, Scott, a fellow air traffic controller had a new litter available.  We decided to "kitten sit" to see if it would work out. Katie named the kitten, Cozy. Both Peg and Tommy were allergic. So, we couldn't keep Cozy. It was sad. Just two days before the kitten was scheduled to go home, Tommy tried one of his experiments. You take food coloring and put it on the kitten food. For good measure, take more coloring and put it on the kitten. This adorable grey and white kitten, was now a punk rock little cat. She was green and blue and red striped. It was uncomfortable for Tom when he brought her back to Scott. Well, that was our Tommy!"

This tribute was added by Joan Bochat on 30th August 2015

"I'm not sure what to say. It's been days, months and now a year.
I think of the good, I hope you're at peace.
May the good earth be soft under you
when you rest upon it,
and may it rest easy over you when,
at the last, you lay out under it,
And may it rest so lightly over you
that your soul may be out
from under it quickly,
and up, and off,
And be on its way to God"

This tribute was added by Jan Wirch on 28th August 2015

"I hope you don't mind me posting here, but I see so much love in this family unit. My deepest condolences."

This tribute was added by Dave Kent on 28th August 2015

"Tom, thank you for sharing Tommy's words about love and being loved. Such amazing, true words! What a gift to have this to read now, from his own heart then.  I'm convinced he's right—love never fails and it's truly the greatest of gifts to have or to give.  I believe that the same love of God that knit him in the beginning and blessed your wonderful family with him for 33 years proclaims that Tommy is more alive now than ever, having shuffled off this mortal coil.  "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." And now Tommy knows!"

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 28th August 2015

"You have surpassed my expectations. I was hoping that our friends and family could leave tributes and tell stories in honor of our son, I have tears streaming down my cheeks but only because your words were so beautiful and pure, and help bring my Tommy close to my heart. Thank you everyone!   PEG"

This tribute was added by Bob Sullivan on 27th August 2015

"I will forever be grateful for Tommy's irreverent sense of humor. I laughed at some things he would say long after he said them. That man had a keen way of finding the truly funny aspects of the world around us. He loved to bring laughter to the moment, especially when it was delightfully inappropriate. He had a gift to make difficult times pass with ease."

This tribute was added by Tom Chapman on 27th August 2015

"As I work in my garden I think of the times we spent talking about his plans and ideas on his garden.  He had a  passion for living things. May he continue to live on like the plant he grew....."

This tribute was added by Mary Ann Collins on 27th August 2015

"Tommy your are always with us, in our hearts out thoughts and memories. You are so missed, loved, and never forgotten. May I honor you on this day with a few last verses of the reading you honored me by; 1 Corinthians 13  "Now we see indistinctly, as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. My knowledge is imperfect now; than I shall know even as I am known. There are in the end three things that last, faith hope and love, and the greatest of these is love."
For you, the then....is now. Thank you for teaching me more about love. Thank you for being a man who understood the spiritual life.May you fully know God's love for you and enjoy the eternal life of love in His kingdom. Love always, your godmother"

This tribute was added by Kathy Wartell Sullivan on 27th August 2015

"I will cherish all the friendship I was fortunate to find,
All the love and all the laughter in the place I leave behind,
All these good things will go with me, they will make my spirit glow,
And that light will shine forever in the next place that I go.
                                         Shine on, Tommy"

This tribute was added by Jamie Nicole on 27th August 2015

"Even now I wait for the phone ring. Our relationship having been mostly made up of phone conversations, but still, after 5 years, it doesn't matter. The love is there in all forms. One of the best memories I have with him was his sense of humor. I pronounce myself witty without a shred of modesty because it's true, but Tommy matched my sense of humor exactly. I cannot recall a conversation we had where laughter wasn't present and heard often. What we laughed about..well that's between us but still every time I think of something funny, or watch something that cracks me up, I want to reach for my phone to share it with Tommy. He got it, and he was the only other person I knew who'd get the joke, no matter how wrong it was, especially those incidents where I knew I couldn't share it with anyone else. I love you Tommy."

This tribute was added by Joe Podlewski on 27th August 2015

"Tommy is my godson, and we who love him can all take comfort in the fact that a year ago today he was born into eternal life.  "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die." John 11:25, 26."

This tribute was added by Dawn Hicks on 27th August 2015

"Tommy brought so much happiness to my life, and helped get me through some of my darkest hours. I love and miss him so much, and deeply cherish the memories I have of him."

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 26th August 2015

"August 5th is Tommy's birthday.  August 27th is the day he died.  At least for us here on Earth.  Viewed from Heaven's perspective, I wonder if it isn't just the opposite.  Is there a birthday celebration today, the 27th?  Or at least a "welcome home, you've been here a year" party?"

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 26th August 2015

"The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not "get over" the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same nor would you want to.
Elizabeth Kübler-Ross, Swiss psychiatrist and author"

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 24th August 2015

"Think of your child, then, not as dead, but as living; not as a flower that has withered, but as one that is transplanted, and touched by a Divine hand. He is blooming in richer colors and sweeter shades than those on Earth."
Richard Hooker
British theologian"

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 24th August 2015

"I take much comfort in remembering that we are spiritual beings, temporarily taking material form on this Earth stage. And, of course, I think of my beloved son, Tommy.  I'm not sure if I taught him this concept, or he taught me.
“Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
As I foretold you, were all spirits and
Are melted into air, into thin air:
And, like the baseless fabric of this vision,
The cloud-capp’d towers, the gorgeous palaces,
The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve
And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.”
― William Shakespeare, The Tempest"

This tribute was added by Thomas Edward Wartell on 21st August 2015

"" Tommy seemed to be more in tune with the universe than anyone I've known. He had a sort of higher wisdom."

Tommy's husband, Jerry Paduano, told me this after reading Tommy's essay, Green Eyes (see below).
      -.      
                            PEG"

This tribute was added by Brian Sullivan on 21st August 2015

"The flame that burns twice as bright burns half as long."


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This memorial is administered by:

Katie (Wartell) Hines
Thomas Edward Wartell
Peg Wartell

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