Obituary of Thomas Keith Strohm
… but a faithful man, who can find? – Proverbs 20:6 Thomas Keith Strohm passed peacefully into glory on the 23rd of January, 2022, surrounded by his beloved wife and daughters. His legacy is more than can be recounted. The impact that he had on countless lives will continue for eternity.
One of four siblings born to Robert and Patricia Strohm, Tom deeply loved and respected his family. He began serving in business with his father at 14. His search for “more meaning” was fulfilled when Joe Augustine shared the simplicity of the gospel with Tom in 1976. It turned his life upside down and for those of us who were witnesses, it was very much like the conversion of Paul from the book of Acts. Leaving the businesses behind in New York, Tom ventured to Arizona sensing that the Lord was leading him and his wife, Doreen, into a new season. He worked as an accountant before entering full-time ministry in 1987.
It was soon after arriving in Arizona that he sensed the Lord’s calling to open their home to pregnant teens. For over 30 years they housed teens and young adults, developing a full-service maternity home where over 500 women and children took refuge. A men’s program was added years later at a complex in Tempe and then transitioned into a homeless recovery program. In the years that followed, they provided free counseling for marriages, individuals, and families, with the goal of restoration and rebuilding. Tom and Doreen wrote “Freedom’s Journey” for recovering addicts, developed and taught countless seminars on grief and parenting, and launched and trained many for ministry.
Tom also had a passion for his local congregation, Beth Emanuel, where he served gratefully as an elder for the last 8 years. In addition to serving as president of the ministry he founded: Jesus Cares Ministries (jesuscaresministries.org), he also served joyfully on the boards of Fortified Marriages Ministry (http://www.fortifiedmarriages.com), New Creation Ministries, and Swaziserve Inc. (swaziserve.com).
Thomas “Keith” managed to do all that and raise four beautiful daughters. He loved his girls fiercely! These daughters were very involved in all the ministry’s activities from their earliest memories. Sharing their mom and dad was often difficult, but they all considered it part of the beautiful heritage that was passed on to them. People coming and going, lives changing, stories of tragedy and triumph, and serving the broken was the family’s call for each day! Tom managed to take time for each daughter. Family excursions were a regular part of his mission; he believed that modeling Jesus to his family and serving them was every bit as important and an integral part of his ministry calling. No family members felt neglected around Tom.
Tom enjoyed every one of his grandchildren (plus the multiple foster grands that he adored). Whether cooking for his grandbabies, taking them on little day trips, baking, camping out, bow shooting, fishing or just hanging out, “Papa” always had enough love to go around! He loved them all so well that each grandchild seemed convinced they were his “favorite.” Monthly family worship Sundays were a time for him to continue his investments into his adult children and their husbands, whom he adored as his own sons. He was the real deal!!! A passion for Truth to be protected and the genuine to be upheld will always be what we admired so much.
Tom was husband of 46 years to a wife whom he adored and cherished. He was a faithful father, fun papa, foster dad and grandpa to many, brother, friend, neighbor, and mentor. Thomas “Keith” was preceded in death by his father, Robert Strohm, and his sister-in-law, Pam. He blazed a trail into glory for those left behind: his treasured wife, Doreen; his pride and joy daughters, Stefanie, Christina, Melody, and Tiffany; beloved sons-in-law, Scott, Micah, William, and Christian; his “favorite” grandchildren, Petra, Joshua, Kailey, Esther, Alexis, Madi, Wyatt, Abi, Summer, Gavin, Elijah, Charlotte, Bennett, Liam, Breelynn, and Emalynn; his precious mama, Patricia Strohm, whom he adored; loved siblings, Robert Jr. (Sandy), Peter, and Patty (Phil) and all their children. He was a kind-hearted brother to his sisters-in-law, Denise, Chris, and Dawn, and a loving uncle to their children. Uncle Keith was a favorite! He also left behind countless spiritual sons and daughters.
The void is huge but the call is greater. The call to follow the Master is clear to all of us. Who can find a faithful man? We did and we will never be the same!
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be sent in his honor to their mission: Jesus Cares Ministries, PO Box 371, Chandler AZ 85244. A “Celebration of Life” will be held on Sunday, March 20, 2022, at 1:00 pm at Arizona Community Church, 9325 S Rural Rd, Tempe, Arizona 85284. Late lunch reception immediately following the service in the Community Center.