William "Bill" Tom, a member of the U.S. Olympic team which placed sixth in Melbourne, died Oct. 31, 2012. He was 89.
At 33, Tom was the oldest member of that Olympic team, which also included John Beckner, Armando Vega, Charles Sims, Richard Becker and Abie Grossfeld.
Born March 15, 1923, in San Francisco, Tom lived most of his life in Southern California, where he was a member of the Los Angeles Turners. He was the 1949 AAU national vault champion, and also a Southern California regional all-around champion.
Tom spent much of his life as a teacher in high school and college. From 1957-59, he also taught at Normal University in Taiwan on a Fulbright Award.
Aside from gymnastics, Tom was an accomplished surfer and a championship ping pong and tennis player.
Tom is survived by his ex-wife, Nancy; daughters Lisa and Mai Ling; son, Tracy, and six grandchildren.
IG thanks Abie Grossfeld for contributing to this obituary.