Tom was preceded in death by his parents, Clyde and Hazel Lane and brothers, Walter Lane and Robert Lane. He is survived by his loving wife, Kaye Lane, of Elizabethton, TN; children, Karen Lane Small of Texas, Warren Lane of Kingsport, and Darrell Matheson and wife Melissa of Hampton; a dear friend of many years and the mother of Karen and Warren, Carolyn Lane of Texas; a granddaughter, Sarah Small of Texas; sister-in-law Debbie Crow (Kelvin)Elizabethton; nieces Missy Andes (Chris), Paula Gryder, Candy Martin (Matthew), Traci Lane and Paula Sue Nelson; special great niece, Whitney Andes(Jordon Kuykendall) and great nephews Wesley Andes, Gabe Harding and Avery Harding. Special friends and neighbor Rick and Theresa Davies.
Tom graduated from Dobyns-Bennett High School in Kingsport in 1957. He attended the United States Air Force Institute Technology at Syracuse University where he learned the Russian language. He was stationed in Turkey as a Russian linguist. After serving his country from 1957 to 1962, Tom attended Arlington State College in Arlington, Texas where he earned a BA in English in 1966. He then earned a Masters of Arts in English in 1967 and received a Doctor of Philosophy in English in 1972 both from Texas Christian University in Ft. Worth, Texas.
Tom began a long-standing teaching career at East Tennessee State University in September, 1968 before taking a leave to complete his PhD. He returned in 1972 and enriched the lives of many students in courses ranging from Creative Writing to 18th Century British Literature to Detective Fiction. He retired from ETSU as Professor Emeritus - English in May, 1999. He enjoyed reading many genres, golf, UT football, ETSU basketball and was an avid Dallas Cowboys fan.
The family would like to extend a special thank you to Amedisys Hospice for the care, compassion and kindness provided to Tom and his family.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Tom’s memory to the charity of your choice.
A reception to celebrate Tom’s life will be held at the family home on Saturday, September 22 from 2:00 to 5:00 pm.