On Sunday morning, after a brief illness, Thomas Marvin Young of Paso Robles, passed away peacefully with family around him. He was born in Salinas, the son of Porter and Jenny Young of King City – the last of five children. His childhood was spent in King City, where he graduated high school in 1947. His four siblings – Alice C. Yost, James L. Young, William P. Young and Robert S. Young – all predeceased him, but leave behind numerous nieces and nephews and their progeny.
In 1951, after returning from two tours of duty in the US Navy, Thomas married Patricia Trumbull, who was the love of his life. Their children (Toni Annelle Young, Tomme Young, Patric and Nanette Young) and grandchildren (Jesse Young, Lindsey and Colin Baker, Lauren Nicole and Michael Browne, and Jacob and Rachael Young) all reside in California. He leaves behind these and many other friends whom he was loved by and loved as additional grandchildren.
Thomas and Patricia and their children moved to Paso Robles in 1966, when Thomas was transferred by his employer, Texaco Incorporated, to work in the office at the San Ardo oil field. He was an active member of the community, giving rather freely of his time and skills to a range of activities, including as a Little League coach, girls softball umpire, Boy Scout camping/hiking coordinator, Bearcat Booster, Toastmaster, Master of the Paso Robles Masonic Lodge, and informal chauffer to school/team events.
In 1971, he was elected to the first of his three terms on the Paso Robles School Board. During those terms he and his fellow Board members were proudest of their ability to bring together funding and other necessities for the building of the current Paso Robles High School.
Thomas was first hired by Texaco in 1950, as a surveyor. While working full time to provide his family living, he began attending college at night, eventually receiving an associate degree, which qualified him for promotion into the drafting office. Throughout his 40 years with Texaco (through its various mergers) he continued to receive job promotions based on his quality work and indisputable abilities, eventually being promoted to Engineer. Among other opportunities, his work for Texaco resulted in him being trained as a SCUBA diver, so that he could inspect the environmental safety of offshore installations. In the late 1980s, the company asked him to manage and oversee environmental compliance for various “wildcat” (sample well drilling) and other sites. This work took him to Alaska and several Western States, taking Patricia with him whenever possible. They were preparing for a temporary posting in Russia in 1991, when his wife Patricia passed away. At that point, although he retired from Texaco, he felt that he could not face actual retirement, and began a new life of community service.
In addition to serving as a volunteer elections supervisor in the county, he focused his efforts on helping our public officials. In particular, he was committed to the idea of law and order as a positive force in our community, and supported his commitment with his actions. In the 1960’s before moving to Paso Robles, he had given his free time to becoming a member of the Santa Paula Police Reserve unit, which he served on for four years. In Paso Robles, at the time of his retirement, he began volunteering at the PRPD, eventually being given responsibility to conduct and decide various administrative hearings on matters such as vehicle towing and license/registration suspensions. During that time, he was affectionately known as “Judge Dredd.” He also was one of the key participants in the formation of the PRPD Volunteer Patrol, which he served on for about 10 years. His volunteer activities during this time were so numerous and well appreciated that he received the North County RSVP Volunteer of the Year award four times, as well as receiving numerous other certificates and commendations from the police department.
He was well into his seventies when the Police Chief asked if he would be willing to take on a paid part-time position as “Code Enforcement Officer,” ensuring that local residences stayed in compliance with building code and related requirements. He accepted the job, prompting his children to teasingly refer to him as the world’s oldest rookie cop. He was 81 when he left that position.
Thomas was a wonderful father, grandfather, coach, friend and mentor, with a quick and delicious sense of humor, a strong ethical sense and a warm smile and handshake for everyone. With gratitude for the ease of his passing, we are still faced with the tremendous sense of loss that he is not physically among us. We will always have him with us in spirit.