Promoted to Glory: Lt. Colonel Tom Jones

Lt. Colonel Tom Jones was Promoted to Glory on January 8, 2024, at the age of 86. 

Thomas Edward Jones was born on October 15, 1938, in Savannah, GA to parents Tom and Elise Jones. He grew up in Jacksonville, FL and attended the Citadel Corps there with his family. During this time, he developed his deep love of sports, music, history, poetry, and The Salvation Army—all of which would become lifelong passions. 

In 1960, Tom graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Arts in history. He then entered the banking profession in Jacksonville, while also serving in the U.S. Army Reserves. 

In June 1961, Tom married Mary Holz and together they entered the training college in Atlanta in 1963 as members of the Proclaimers of the Faith session of cadets. Together they served in various appointments in Florida, Texas, Georgia, Maryland, Alabama, Mississippi, Washington D.C., North Carolina, and Virginia. 

In 1982, Major Tom was selected to attend the International College for Officers in London, England. Their final appointment was to the Army’s National Headquarters, where Colonel Tom served as national community relations and development secretary. He loved working with the National Advisory Board and worked with them to start The Salvation Army’s annual National Kettle Kickoff hosted by the Dallas Cowboys during their Thanksgiving Day halftime show.   

 Colonel Tom loved music and playing his trombone. During his career, he attended and was on staff at music camps all over the Southern Territory. He played in the Baltimore Area Band, the National Capital Band, the Florida Divisional Band, and the Southern Territorial Band for many years. 

Another passion for him included sports – playing softball, tennis, golf, and basketball, and watching the New York Yankees and Florida Gators play. He could tell you almost any statistic or score from any team to ever play. And if you were in one of his bands, or worked with him, you learned all the payers’ numbers and “who pulled the only unassisted triple play in World Series history.” He had an amazing memory and knew practically all the tune book numbers to all the songs in the Salvation Army Songbook. 

Lt. Colonels Tom and Mary Jones retired from active service in 2004 and moved to Clearwater, FL. Colonel Tom continued to work in retirement, both with the Board of Visitors and the Clearwater Corps, helping to strengthen the advisory board and The Salvation Army in the community. He also continued to play his trombone with the Clearwater Corps Band and the SAROA (Salvation Army Retired Officers Association) Band, as well as leading that musical group. 

He was a fourth-generation Salvationist and loved The Salvation Army and the Lord with all his heart and soul. He wanted his life to count and make a difference in the world, as well as in the lives of all he met along the way. 

Lt. Colonel Tom Jones is survived by his wife of 62 years, Lt. Colonel Mary Jones; and his daughters, Ellen Jones and Natalie Jones; his son, David Jones; and a grandson, Parker Thomas Jones. He is also survived by two brothers, three sisters-in-law, and many cousins, nieces, and nephews. 

A Celebration Of Life is to be held at the Clearwater Corps on Saturday, January 13, 2024, with a service to follow at a later date at Westview Cemetery in Atlanta.