John Tomlinson Roderick
March 19, 1954 – May 24, 2020
John Tomlinson Roderick, known to many as Tom or TR, transitioned onto his next adventure in his art studio in Boulder, Colorado. He was sixty-six years old and lived a beautiful, creative life with his wife of twenty-eight years, Donna. With an optimistic nature, he virtuously battled Glioblastoma, a journey that he handled with grace and style for twenty-eight months. He is survived by his wife Donna; his son, Chase; and his daughter Rachel Rae and 'son-in-love' Ryan Wix.
Born in Fort Riley, Kansas, TR was raised by the everlasting love of his mother, Nancy Adelaide Roderick (deceased), and father, legendary Dr. James Evan Roderick II (deceased). TR was brought up in a large family; his siblings included Rees, David (deceased), Melinda, and Richard. Tom grew up in Salina, Kansas, and enjoyed every moment of his youth. He was a member of the Christ Cathedral Episcopal Church and was a well-rounded young adult, excelling in academics, music, and athletics. From a young age, Tom was a natural musician playing the guitar, a talent that he pursued throughout his life; he was also a brilliant keyboard player later on. He played in several bands throughout his life, and music was one of his greatest passions. In high school, Tom was a member of the Salina Central High School basketball team that won the Kansas State Championship, he was known for his defense and speed on the court. Following high school, he attended his Alma Mater, The University of Kansas, in Lawrence, KS. He bled Crimson and Blue, as he was a lifelong fan of the Kansas Jayhawk basketball team, Rock Chalk!
Moving from Kansas to California for a brief period, TR eventually found his way to Colorado, where he pursued a career in commercial real estate. His son Chase is following in his footsteps in the Denver real estate market, which TR was very proud of. As an agent, TR became highly referred to due to his integrity and loyalty to those he worked with. People loved and trusted Tom. To many, he felt like family, and being able to soak in his presence brought joy to those around him. TR was a hilarious man, known for his one-liners and effortless ways of making people laugh. He brought joy into every situation. After the birth of his daughter, TR's "hidden" artistic abilities began to emerge. When TR was asked to decorate a big-box playhouse for Rachel Rae, he "miraculously" painted a beautiful border of blooming iris. His surprised wife and mother-in-law, Judee, went right out and bought his first cache of art supplies. They challenged him to paint more. He began by re-creating well-known masterpieces, and in a very short (but hard-at-work) time, became a prolific, self-taught artist. In 2011, with his wife as his business partner, TR began painting full-time, and Donna sold his work on the internet through their company, Tom Roderick Art. TR's artwork, including many originals and commissioned portraits, can be seen all over the world.
Tom flourished throughout his lifetime, pursing moments that brought him joy. His kindness and imagination will continue his legacy. He was laidback, contagiously happy, and a friend to everyone. If TR wasn't painting, you could find him in his garden, when you take in the beautiful flowers this summer think of TR shining down on you.
"I want you to walk with me in the garden of your heart, where I have taken up permanent residence." Genesis 3:8; Psalm 89:15
We know he would want all of us to celebrate him in joy, love, and laughter. However, due to the current social-distancing guidelines, we are postponing the larger-than-life celebration he deserves. In the meantime, memorial donations can be made to the Roderick Family at 1810 Iris Ave, Boulder, Colorado, 80304. We challenge you to uphold his memory by singing, dancing, painting, and creating; a digital memorial is being made to preserve and share all of our memories #TRForeverMore.
John Tomlinson Roderick
June 23, 2020
It was not until I learned of Nino Samuel’s passing that I became aware that Tom had left his earthly home. We were both in the Class of ‘72. Me at McPherson and Tom, a Salina Mustang. Tom and I “locked horns” all through Junior High and High School. He was a great athlete and a wonderful guy. During our college years he was always so kind and friendly whenever we saw each other. I always had such respect for him. I was fascinated to learn more about his life and particularly how he came to become an artist. He was blessed with so many talents. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and close friends.
Dr. Mike Frazier, Zionsville IN
June 16, 2020
The thing you should know about Tom (TR) is that he would light up every room he entered with his genuine smile and disarming, friendly personality. We began working in real estate together 33 years ago and TR was my first mentor in the business, one from whom I learned so much. I think back to those great times together and the friendship we developed outside of our business. Over time, TR married wonderful Donna and we and were both set on a great course in life. One of my best memories with TR was when we watched KU win the National Championship together in 1988 and KU was established as my favorite basketball team (right behind the Buffs ; )) Eventually, in 1999 we both moved on from our business and as my family moved farther away from Boulder, we were able to still stay in touch and talk or get together every few years. It was always a joy to reconnect with Tom and Donna. Amy and I send our love to the family and look forward to meeting up again with TR on the other side.
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
June 10, 2020
I met TR through my wife around 6 years ago when we were dating. When we first went to visit them at their house I saw these paintings and a few of them looked familiar to me and then it dawned on my that I had seen them hanging at the Art Walk in downtown Denver on Sante Fe. That was about 8 years before coming to their home for my first time. TR was telling me that he considered that we met then when I met his paintings at the art walk. The friendship and love both he and Donna displayed for Dora my wife was amazing and both of them along with Rachel and Ryan all welcomed me as part of their close knit family that first day Dora took me to meet them. I truly feel blessed by having the honor to have been his friend before he left us and wish I could've hung out with him for many more years than I was able to. From the little time I knew of him I felt extremely close to him as if he was the older brother that I lost many years ago. That was the nature of his spirit and I am sure his soul is intertwined into all of the art and music in heaven. Miss you TR my soul brother from another mother!
June 7, 2020
TR was the little brother that no one minded having around... always smiling and quick to join in on any of the neighborhood adventures. Talented guitarist at an early age with that awesome Roderick “swagger “ he and big brother “Rave” rocked the house many times! You will be missed TR!
June 7, 2020
Peace and blessings to Donna and the family. TR will always be remembered with love and respect.
May 29, 2020
Always smiling, TR was very animated and always made me laugh at the stories of his life experiences. When I was ill and experienced memory loss we would talk and laugh for hours sharing our experiences on how bazarre life had become. TR was a great friend who always had the time to listen with sincerity and concern. I will truly miss our conversations and friendship. What a great friend he was.
May 28, 2020
TR is an extraordinary Soul... the first time we met I could feel the love in his heart. Just being around him you felt his peace and kindness. He welcomed my family with open arms. After Rachel and Ryan’s wedding we moved Tom inside, I went to his window to say goodbye... the last thing he said to me was “Did I tell you how pretty you looked today” My heart melted...TR made a difference in all of our lives and we will cherish the memories we had with him forever...Thank you TR for being an extraordinary example of a true, kind and loving person. Rachel and Ryan have learned what true love is, thank you my friend ❤️
May 28, 2020
TR was a friend to so many, and he demonstrated love to everyone he met. He was a creative force, and he chose to live life on his terms, choosing an artistic path over materialism. He loved his family—- as a devoted husband, and an example to Chase and Rachel of how one might choose to live with passion, levity, and outreach— always allowing them to seek out new directions and opportunities with his full support.
He was my lifelong friend. Each time we spoke, we picked right up where we left off. We spoke of music, and art, and the Jayhawks, and would update each other on what the kids were up to, with great pride for their accomplishments. His spirit will live on within all who knew him. I’m saddened by his departure, but I know he’s with his folks in a better place.
One of his last best days on Earth, was the marriage of Rachel to Ryan in the backyard a few weeks ago. The pictures tell the story of how happy he was to be there. It’s been a challenging past couple of years, but I thankful that Donna and Rachel and Chase were right there with him to the end. TR, I love you, brother. May you Rest In Peace.
May 28, 2020
TR, radiated dynamism. From the moment I met him in the summer of 2014 I was in awe of presence. His art and his music were physical manifestations of his presence, but his mere energy exuded creativity. Tad and I were lucky enough to spend many evenings in the beautiful home that he shared with his wife Donna. The experience was like stepping out of chaos into serenity; fine music, fine art and amazing conversation. He passed, like he lived his life, with grace. His wife Donna was his angel. Now he is hers. I will forever cherish his friendship and he will live on in my continued relationship with Donna and their beautiful daughter Rachel Rae.