Brentwood-Roesch-Patton Funeral Home

9010 Church Street East, Brentwood, TN


Thomas Joseph Herrmann

June 6, 1957October 9, 2019

Thomas Joseph Herrmann was born on June 6, 1957, in Sisters Hospital, Buffalo, NY, to Robert and Joan Kennedy Herrmann. Tom attended St. Mary of the Lake school through eighth grade and Canisius High School. In 1975, he received an appointment to the United States Naval Academy, where he served as Company Commander for the 17th Company and participated in many extracurricular activities including flag football and sailing. Upon graduation, he was selected for flight school in Pensacola, Florida, where he flew the T-34 fixed wing aircraft. He was assigned to HT-8 for TH-57 helicopter basic training and to HT-18 for UH-1 helicopter advanced training. Tom’s first permanent duty station was NAS Norfolk, VA. He flew the SH-2 helicopter, completing multiple deployments to the Mediterranean, Persian Gulf, and North Atlantic aboard various small platform ships (frigates and destroyers) in support of U.S. Navy operations during this three year assignment. Tom’s next duty station was in Pensacola, FL as a flight instructor in VT-2, where he taught many student naval aviators how to fly. It was during this assignment that he met his future wife, Elizabeth (Betsy) Baldy. It was fitting that they met in the Catholic Church in Pensacola as they went on to teach religious education in adjoining classrooms, attended mass together regularly, and actively participated in every parish they joined during their married life.

Tom transitioned to the Naval Reserve in 1987. He applied and was accepted to Harvard Business School shortly thereafter. He loved being a student again and excelled in the academics. He and Betsy were married between his first and second year of business school at the United States Naval Academy chapel on June 18, 1988. Living in Boston to finish out his 2nd year of HBS, they were able to take advantage of all that Boston had to offer. Upon graduating in 1989, Tom took a job with United Technologies where he rotated through various companies within UT every 6 months. He worked for Pratt and Whitney, Otis Elevator, and Sikorsky Aircraft, taking them to Farmington, CT, Paris, France, Middletown, CT, and Shelton, CT. In Paris, Tom and Betsy traveled throughout Europe, planning trips to different countries every weekend. In Middletown, Tom and Betsy co-taught religious education to 7th graders in their home. Incredibly, they still wanted a family after that middle school experience. While at Sikorsky, Tom traveled to the Far East and met people who would become some of his lifelong friends. Once a month, Tom traveled to Weymouth, MA for Naval Reserve duty. He flew helicopters in the unit, continuing his lifelong love affair with flying.Tom and Betsy welcomed their first two children, Daniel Patrick and Caroline Elizabeth into their family while living in Shelton, CT. In 1996, eager to live in a more temperate climate, Tom accepted an offer to work in Nashville, TN. It was in Nashville that they welcomed Ryan Joseph and Delaney Faith into their family. Tom went on to work at four other businesses in the Nashville area, retiring from Cardinal Health in March of 2019. Tom, Betsy, and the children were very active in their Brentwood church, Holy Family. Along with being a daily communicant, Tom wanted to serve others. The Room In The Inn, Haiti Mission trips, and the Knights of Columbus were among his favorite ministries. Tom took early retirement in March 2019 so that he could spend more time enjoying the fruits of his labor, planning multiple trips with Betsy and the children. One of Tom’s first trips was with his son Danny and his brothers. They took a motorcycle trip through Kentucky to close out his working career and usher in his life of leisure. In May 2019, Tom saw his son Ryan graduate from college with high distinction and his daughter Delaney graduate from high school, also with honors. The family attended a Herrmann family wedding in Mexico at the end of May, where Tom was able to see most of his family. In June, Tom celebrated three children’s birthdays, his 62nd birthday, and his 31st wedding anniversary. In July, Tom helped his dad celebrate his 90th birthday. A few weeks later, while visiting his mother-in-law in Mobile, AL with his wife and daughter, he became ill and was diagnosed with T Cell lymphoma. He and Betsy returned to Nashville to undergo treatment. The doctors, nurses, and support staff at Vanderbilt said they had never seen a patient so compliant, polite, determined, or able to bounce back from so many serious setbacks. Tom was appreciative of each and every one of them and the care they provided. Tom was a hardworking and loving husband and father. He is survived by his wife Betsy, children, Danny, Callie, Ryan, and Delaney, parents, Bob and Joan Herrmann, and his brothers, Mike, Jack, Jim, and sister, Peg, their spouses, and many nieces and nephews. He was a very accomplished pilot and scholar, as well as a devoted father, husband, son, brother, friend, patriot, and disciple. He was a very humble man with a heart large enough to love everyone in his life completely and without malice. He leaves behind a huge hole no one or nothing will ever be able to fill. He was our hero.

In lieu of flowers, Tom wanted donations to go to the Haiti mission program at Holy Family Catholic Church. Checks can be made payable to HFCC, with “Tom Herrmann memorial” on the memo line.


  • Gathering of Family and Friends Friday, October 25, 2019
  • Celebration of Life Service Saturday, October 26, 2019


Thomas Joseph Herrmann

have a memory or condolence to add?

Mike Van Horn

November 3, 2019

I was blessed to know Tom at the Naval Academy and we encountered one another periodically through our navy reserve careers. Tom gave me a gift of advice our plebe year that I could never adequately repay. God bless you all. I am so sorry for the loss of this fine man and will always be grateful that I met him. Mike Van Horn, USNA '79

Debbie DeJoy

October 25, 2019

To Bob, Joan, Betsy and all of the Herrmann family:
So very sorry to hear about Tom...it has been a long time since Kennison Pkwy but I have fond memories of all of the Herrmann family and loved hearing about their many accomplishments. I remember Tommy as we called him was the 1st person I knew who went to the Naval Academy. He certainly accomplished quite a lot in his too short life.
I am sure his family was what he was most proud of...Hoping your faith, family, friends and wonderful memories bring some measure of comfort and peace...
Fondly, Debbie DeJoy Moessinger, Louisville, KY

Christopher Kohn

October 25, 2019


I am so sorry to hear of Tom's passing, and feel sad for you and your family. It seems like not that many years ago when we celebrated your wedding at the Naval Academy. A reminder of how short and fragile our lives are on this earth.

Please be assured that you and your family are and will be remembered in my prayers. May Tom, freed from his suffering, rest in the Peace of Christ.

Chris Kohn

Whitney Jones

October 23, 2019

Dear Herrmann Family,

I am deeply sorry for your loss. I had the great honor of working with Tom at Cardinal Health. He truly is one of the kindest, most compassionate, honest and generous people I have met. It was an honor to work with him!

I am blessed that God allowed me to be touched by such a kind soul. May you find comfort in knowing he is in a better place now.

Robin Tagatz

October 23, 2019

Betsy and family,
Our family is heartbroken to hear about Tom's sudden passing. We are keeping you in our thoughts and prayers. Our thanks go out to him for his military service, and being a great neighbor. Sending our thoughts, condolences, and prayers.
Robin, Jon, Riley and Jack Tagatz

Carol Whistler Starck

October 22, 2019

This is to Joan and Bob, the cousins I know.
I am so sad to hear about your wonderful son. Sheila has sent the news to us here in Buffalo. I didn’t know Tom but he sure accomplished many, many wonderful and amazing and successful goals and events. I only wish I had known him but life in this huge family has a way of moving people around. Please give my condolences to all your family.
Tom and I were second cousins. In Buffalo now with so many of us still here, we see many second cousins who are very close and such good friends. I don’t know if any of your children live in this area anymore. I’ll communicate with Sheila.
Joan and Bob, I hope your families will be taking good care of you during this sad time. I’m sure they will.
God bless you all ❤️
Carol Whistler Starck

Christopher Cadiz

October 22, 2019

Never was there a more gentle spirit than Tom. I never had the pleasure of seeing that kind face again after we graduated 40 years ago. We went our separate ways but the memory of Tom's most excellent demeanor and the depth of his graciousness shines through. 'Young Tom' remains immortalized in my mind long after the details of our short journey at school have been forgotten. That winning smile that bespoke not a moment of malice. Sad to see you go, friend.
My sincere condolences to Betsy and all of his family.

Kitty, John & Nieka deNeve

October 17, 2019

Dear Jack, Kerry & all of the Herrmann Family,
We are so very sorry for the untimely loss of your amazing brother. What an admirable person & life he lived! We can’t imagine the pain you are feeling. We send our sincerest condolences and love and want you to know how much we care about all of you. We pray that you find strength & peace in the beautiful memories you shared throughout the years.

Sending love to all. We miss you!
Love, Kitty, John & Nieka

Bryan McDaniel

October 16, 2019

Dear Herrmann Family,

I am so very sorry for your loss. I had the great honor of meeting Tom while working at Cardinal Health. He was one of the best leaders I have ever worked with and one of the most kind, honest, and generous people I have ever met.

It am grateful to have met such a kind-hearted soul and am certainly a better person for it. Rest in peace my friend.

Carole Bailey Taylor

October 14, 2019

I met Tom in 2000, when he hired me to work for him at Mailnet. He was very professional, yet easy to talk to. I worked for Tom a total of 8 years. He was always encouraging all of us on his team, and had that great sense of humor. I will always remember his kindness when I was suddenly widowed in 2005. Tom was a wonderful person, and a blessing to all of us that knew him.