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Adam "Tom" Thomas Birdinground

October 18, 1943 - July 19, 2017


Adam Thomas Birdinground Jr. (Deaxkaashbaachaache) passed away surrounded by his loved ones, in Salem, Oregon, July 19, 2017 at the age of 73.

He is survived by his wife, Joyce, children, Sarah (Ken), Alexis, Adam (Mika), grandchildren, Logan, Axel, Sage and pets Macy and Jack.

He was born on October 18, 1943 in Tulalip, WA to Adam Birdinground of the Crow tribe and Gloria Kittles of the Lummi Tribe.  Better known as Tom, he was the eldest of 8 siblings, Vernon Sr., Gloria, Vendean, and Jeannie and Barney, Duwayne and Twyla, (Magdalene Mocassin, Jeffery and Adrian Medicine Horse.)Tom graduated from Anacortes High School in 1962, drafted to the U.S. Army and proudly served in the Vietnam War from 1966-67, graduated from Evergreen State College in 1974 with a bachelor degree in Arts. He worked at Boeing as a riveter, commercial fisherman, Bureau of Indian Affairs contracting in Juneau, AK, Project Officer at Indian Health Service in Anchorage, AK, Neah Bay Service Unit Director in Neah Bay, WA, CEO at Chemawa Indian Health Clinic in Salem. He retired in 2007 and had served the Indian Health Service for 35 years.  While working in Alaska, he met Joyce, and they eloped in 1979 in Bow, WA. Together they had a daughter, Alexis, and son, Adam. Years later his family reconnected with a daughter, Sarah, who was raised by an adopting family.

Tom enjoyed spending time with his family, being a spectator at his kids’s sporting events, golfing, swimming, playing darts, attending powwows, road trips, classic rock music, an Elvis fan, fishing and taking the scenic route.

He is preceded in death by his mother Gloria Johnson; his father, Adam; brother, Barney Birdinground; sister, Magdalene Moccasin and infant sister.

Visitation will be from 1:00pm to 3:00pm Sunday, July 23, 2017 at Virgil T. Golden Funeral Service in Salem, OR.  A Celebration of Life, sharing of stories and refreshments will follow the viewing at the Birdinground residence.  A second viewing will be held at the Bullis Mortuary in Hardin, MT and he will be laid to rest at the Crow Veterans Cemetery in Crow Agency, Montana.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to The Wounded Warrior Project, www.woundedwarriorproject.org . The family would like to thank the nurses and caregivers of the Intensive Care Unit at Salem Hospital for their care and support.

 

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Old Friend, you will be sorely missed.  It is hard to realize that our friendship of 50+ years has moved to a different plateau.  Will see you at another time, another place. 



Now, in my geezerhood, I am wise enough to thank God daily for the wonderful souls He set along my path through life. The friends we make--their love--is the only treasure we can take with us.  Tom is a rare gem in my treasure chest. In reality, we spent only a few short years of our youthful wildhood as daily friends, but this cemented a lifelong, unbreakable connection.  Tom's smile brought a special light into any room he entered.  He was just plain fun to be with.  I will miss him. I am diminished by his loss, but forever made greater because he called me friend.  I pray God's blessings and grace will comfort and carry you all through this time of sorrow.  In faith, I know we will all be reunited in Glory.        



Sorry to hear of the passing of my old friend, Tom. Will always have fond memories from the old CINA days, and after, bowling, softball, Tom, in his ribbon shirt, smiling and laughing. Best thoughts to Joyce from Ketchikan.
                                                                               Bill Carey



Rest In Peace Uncle Tom. Thinking of you Auntie Joyce, Alexis and Adam