PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — Capt. Thomas W. Lyons, Jr., 88, of Portsmouth died on Friday, March 31, 2017 at Atria Aquidneck Place.
He was the husband of the late Marguerite (Creegan) Lyons.
Born on July 10, 1928, and raised in Jamestown, he was the son of the late Thomas W. and Anna (Boone) Lyons.
Capt. Lyons attended De La Salle Academy, Admiral Farragut Academy and Brown University before entering the Naval Academy from which he graduated with the Class of 1952 as a member of the 20th Company. Immediately after graduation he sailed as crew in the Academy’s yawl Royono which finished first overall and won Class A in the 1952 Newport-Bermuda Race. He subsequently reported to the USS Colahan DD-658 and made two deployments to Korea and then reported to the USS John S McCain DL-3. In 1956 he married Marguerite Creegan of Providence, RI who passed away in 1999. Following a tour in USS Tolovana AO-64 he reported to the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey where he was a member of the first class in Communication Engineering. This was followed by staff communication billets with Destroyer Flotilla One in Yokusuka, Japan, Naval Forces Europe in London, England, Military Assistance Command Vietnam, the Defense Communication Agency and the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington. In between he served as Executive Officer of the USS James E Kyes DD 758, attended the Armed Forces Staff College in Norfolk, VA was Executive Officer of USS Arcadia AD-14 and commanded the USS William R Rush DD714. In 1976 he assumed command of Naval Communications Area Master Station Western Pacific in Guam from which he retired in 1978. After leaving the Navy he spent several years managing the D.N. Kelly & Son Shipyard in Fairhaven, MA. He also became active in local affairs and served several years as the Chairman of the Portsmouth Water and Fire District. Upon re-retiring Capt. Lyons became involved with several volunteer activities including Meals on Wheels, AARP Tax Preparer and the University of Rhode Island Watershed Watch. An active outdoorsman, Capt. Lyons was a past president of the Aquidneck Island Military Rod & Gun Club, the Green Bridge Sportsman’s Association and the Narragansett Chapter of Trout Unlimited, and was a Life Member of the Fall River Rod & Gun Club. He made two or three trips a year to Maine, Florida and the Caribbean to fish.
He is survived by his children, Thomas W. Lyons III and his wife Lynda Laing of West Warwick, RI, and Mary Lou Lyons and her husband Bryan Crandall of Portsmouth, RI, his brother Albert Lyons of Newport, RI, his sisters, Loretta Fuller of Bethel Park, PA, and Frances Toth of Fort Myers, FL,
four grandchildren, Elizabeth Lyons, Kathleen Lyons, Marguerite Crandall and Sean Crandall.
He was the brother of the late Mary Elizabeth Lyons.
Calling hours will be held on Friday, April 7, 2017 from 2-4 and 7-9 in the Connors Funeral Home, 55 West Main Road, Portsmouth, RI.
His funeral will be held on Saturday, April 8, 2017 at 8:00AM from the funeral home followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 9:00AM in St. Barnabas Church, 1697 East Main Road, Portsmouth, RI.
Burial with Military honors will be in Newport Memorial Park, Howland Avenue, Middletown.
Donations in his memory may be made to Meals on Wheels, 70 Bath Street, Providence, RI 02903 or to U.S. Naval Academy Foundation, 247 King George Street, Annapolis, MD 21402.