Thomas Robert Kinney

September 20, 1961December 1, 2018

Thomas Robert Kinney of East Lansing passed away on December 1, 2018 at the age of 57. Tom is survived by his wife, Kristin; stepchildren, Ted and Emma McGinn; father, John “Jack;” and siblings, Kathy Lorenz, Kevin (Patty), Tim (Debbie), Nancy (Mark) Twichell, Jane (Patrick) Huber, and John. Tom was preceded in death by his mother, Jill (2018).

Tom graduated from East Lansing High School in 1979 and proudly served seven years in the U.S. Navy as an Interior Communications Electrician from 1982 to 1989. Shortly after his return to East Lansing, Tom began his career at Michigan State University. He worked as a Telecommunication Engineer at WKAR for 25 years. Tom was a dedicated and conscientious worker, and a loyal Spartan.

Tom loved tinkering with electronics and took any non-working object as a personal challenge. He related well to people from all walks of life. He could, and often would, strike up cheerful conversations with anyone who crossed his path. He was an avid sports fan with a particular affinity for golf. Tom’s interests also included travel and classic cars.

Tom and Kristin were childhood sweethearts and were overjoyed to be reunited later in life. Tom was a loving husband, devoted stepfather, and doting uncle to his nieces and nephews: Erik and Kerry Lorenz; Maureen and Caitlin Kinney; Allie and Jack Kinney; Kurt (Kate), Jay and Shannon Twichell. In July of 2018, Tom became a great-uncle with the birth of Kurt & Kate’s twin children, Griffin and Aubrey Twichell.

Tom’s life will be celebrated with a Memorial Mass at St. John Catholic Church and Student Center, 327 MAC, East Lansing, on Monday, January 14 at 1:30 pm.

Following the service, there will be a reception at 3:00 pm at Coral Gables, 2838 E. Grand River, East Lansing. For those unable to attend the reception, there will be a brief visitation in the church immediately after the service.

There will be a military ceremony preceding interment on Tuesday, January 15 at Fort Custer Cemetery in Augusta, MI.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the American Legion.

The family is being served by Gorsline Runciman Funeral Home, East Chapel, East Lansing.

Memories and condolences may be shared at


  • Jay Twichell, Honorary
  • Kurt Twichell, Honorary
  • Kerry Lorenz, Honorary
  • Maureen Kinney, Honorary
  • Caitlin Kinney, Honorary
  • Allie Kinney, Honorary
  • Jack Kinney, Honorary
  • Shannon Twichell, Honorary
  • Erik Lorenz, Honorary

  • American Legion


  • Memorial Mass Monday, January 14, 2019

Thomas Robert Kinney

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Al Cipparone

January 1, 2019

Dear Kristin and Kinney family,
Please accept my sincere condolences to you about Tom. From Mass at STA, to the football fields of ELHS, to the rock concerts at MSU, I have so many happy memories of growing up with Tom. A true patriot, Tom was loyal to his family, friends, state, and country. I will truly miss his unique sense of humor, personality, and joy of life. We will keep him in our prayers. God's blessings to you.

Matt Carey

December 22, 2018

Dear Kris, Mr Kinney, Kevin, Kathy, Tim, Nancy, Jane, John,
Very sorry to hear about Tom. From 1st grade all the way through his time with the Navy and everything, Tom was a very dear friend to me. So many things happened, I could go on and on. We hadn't spoken in awhile and hopefully he still thought of me as a friend. Life gets in the way sometimes. We'll always have the memories of all the fun stuff we did together. Tom always had the better car and he was the better driver. A lot better at golf too but we never let that get in the way of being friends. Mr Kinney, do you remember when Tom and I would show up at your office at the alumni association? I'm sure you had better things to do than have 2 kids in your office! I'm sure you probably put your membership at risk at Walnut Hills by allowing me in there with Tom, but we had a lot of fun there too.
I'm sorry to hear about Mrs Kinney. She certainly earned her heavenly reward for putting up with all the stuff we did. Keeping a friendship going for well over 25 years is a wonderful thing and Tom was a great friend to me. When he was on Diego Garcia we would write the most hilarious letters back and forth to each other. Then, we all dubbed him the master of the 12 hour plane ride because of the times he went on leave and stayed at my house for a month or two. While Mr and Mrs were living in Santa Barbara. That was a blast too, going to Santa Barbara with Tom. Also the time Grant and I went to San Diego and met up with Tom while he was at the naval station. We also went all over San Diego and Tijuana with Josh and Josh's girlfriend Sarah along. An especially fun year was when Tom and Ken and I attempted to recreate the animal house movie at the place we rented on Clear St. But we managed to pay the rent and learn a thing or two about growing up. I think my personality is partly a result of Tom's friendship and that's a good thing.

With Love and prayers for my best friend Tom,

Matt Carey
East Lansing

Karen Hackett Barrow

December 19, 2018

Dear Tim,Kristen,Kathy and family:
I was so saddened to hear of Tom’s passing. On our reunion weekend in August, Kristen and Tom joined a group of STA/ELHS alumnus ( many years ahead of him!) for breakfast. I had the pleasure of sitting next to Tom and Kristen, and we all had the best time reminiscing and sharing stories. There was much laughter and love, as is always the case when the Kinney family is involved. Sending my prayers and hugs to you all.
Karen Hackett Barrow

Ron Zick

December 4, 2018

I grew up across the street from the Kinneys. Tom was a little older than me, I was closer to Jon. I spent many hours at the Kinney house with many fond memories of Tom and his family! May he Rest In Peace and his family know that he is at peace.