Tom Wiley, ‘huge contributor’ to Middletown city and sports, dies at 82

MIDDLETOWN — One of Middletown’s most vocal cheerleaders has died.

Tom Wiley, a Middletown High School graduate and one of the Middies' most ardent fans, died Sunday at Ohio’s Hospice of Butler & Warren Counties. He was 82.

“He loved the entire community,” said Lynne Wiley, his wife of nearly 60 years. “He got back more than he gave.”

He gave plenty.

“If not the biggest supporter of the city and the schools, anything to do with Middletown, he was one of the biggest,” said Mark Kerns, a retired Middletown teacher who met Wiley in 1985.

A regular at MHS football practices, Wiley looked forward to addressing the team before one game each season, his wife said.

“Kids and his family,” she said. “Those were his life.”

Wiley worked as the Director of Human Resources for Middletown Hospital and was the owner/operator of Health Service Review for 22 years, retiring in 2005. He had been president of the Middletown Area Personnel Association, president of Middletown Jaycees and was president of the Middletown High School Boosters Club when it founded the All American Weekend, a festival that supported MHS facilities.

He also served on the Board of Directors of the Middletown Area Chamber of Commerce and treasurer of the Middletown Community Foundation Board in 1994.

In 2013, he received the Roland P. Ely Jr. Presidents Award, the highest honor from the community foundation.

“Our community has lost a true champion,” said Traci Barnett, MCF executive director. “I have had the pleasure of getting to know both Tom and Lynne personally and professionally and I am heartbroken to learn of Tom’s passing. He is leaving a lasting legacy.”

As a high school junior in 1955, Wiley and his tennis partner, Ronnie Finkelman, won the state tennis doubles title. Wiley is a member of the Middletown High School and Butler County sports halls of fame.

He also was awarded a Gold Medal by the Pigskin Roundball Spectacular, a fundraiser that generated scholarships for Middletown High students. Kerns founded the event that continued for 25 years.

“He was a huge contributor,” Kerns said. “He didn’t want any person left out or left behind."

He spearheaded efforts to improve the facilities in the district and install artificial turf at Barnitz Stadium.

Wiley said her husband was brought up by his parents to be a “giving” person and he continued those efforts throughout his life. He was always planning his next project, his wife said.

“He was in his element when he was busy,” she said. “When one thing stopped, he was ready for the next."

Besides his wife, he’s survived by a son, Rob (Terrie) Wiley; daughter, Amy Wiley; four grandchildren, Sarah (Nick) Haught, Zachary Wiley, Kelsey Wiley and Drew Wiley; and five great grandchildren, Zoey Wiley, Deacon Haught, Maddie Haught, Lawson Haught and Carson Cunningham.

He was preceded in death by his son, Jeffrey Wiley.

Private services were held Tuesday and a celebration of his life will be held later. In lieu of flowers the family asks that memorial contributions be made to the Jeff Wiley Scholarship Fund, c/o Middletown Community Foundation, 300 N. Main St, Suite 300, Middletown, OH 45042.

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