Thomas Wayne (“Whomas”) Fleming, 66, died unexpectedly at his home in Castle Valley, Utah, on the night of Sept. 26.
He is survived by two daughters, Jenna Renae, of Park City, Utah, and Kaya Rose (Rosie) of Salt Lake City, Utah; ex-wife Deanna King, of Moab; his father, Jonathan, of Mineral Point, Wisconsin; and his siblings: Steve (Cathy) of Jump River, Wisconsin; Sue, Randy (Cindy) and Nancy, all of Mineral Point, Wisconsin. Fleming was preceded in death by his mother, Billy Jean Fleming, in 2015.
Fleming was born to Jean and Jon in Ulysses, Kansas, on Feb. 29, 1952. His leap-year birth meant celebrating an actual birthday only every four years. He was lovingly teased about finally being “sweet 16” two years ago.
Fleming’s family moved and traveled fairly often during his childhood, which established his comfort with being “on the road.” From Ulysses, Kansas, to Cleveland, Ohio, to Newton, Kansas, to Logan, Utah, to Horicon, Wisconsin (where he graduated from high school in 1970), Fleming enjoyed new places and making new friends. He developed an easy, outgoing manner based on his kind and loving heart.
His love of the mountains lead him back West after high school and a short stint in college. His travels included the study of Transcendental Meditation while in Denver, Colorado, the enjoyment of communal living in Idaho, and finally an urge to settle in his beloved Castle Valley, Utah, in the mid 1970s.
In these, his younger days, he hiked and climbed to his heart’s content. Fleming worked on a seismographic crew, and wanting Moab to be his home base, he purchase land in Castle Valley. He logged and gathered rock for building a unique house in the valley, “The house of many roofs.” He loved the red rock country as an unwavering part of his adult life.
Fleming’s creativity also came into fruition in his drawings. His appreciation of, and connection to, the Earth inspired his lovely manipulation of native rock when building walls and grottoes and floors. His calm, serene spirit was manifested in his work. His work is spread among many Moab and Castle Valley homes, as well a Moonflower Community Cooperative and Eclecticafe.
Fleming was a loving father who doted on his daughters. They were his greatest joy.
He will be lovingly missed and remembered by his many friends and family, who carry forth his spirit.
Fleming’s ashes will lovingly be spread to many areas he loved in and around Moab and Castle Valley, and the La Sal Mountains … He often dreamed of traveling, but the fear of flying kept him put, so his daughters will escort him to Italy in November for a well-deserved vacation.
A celebration of his life will be held in the near weeks, to be announced at a later date.