Cover photo for Chief Thomas J. Rhoads's Obituary
Chief Thomas J. Rhoads Profile Photo
1966 Chief 2022

Chief Thomas J. Rhoads

June 25, 1966 — September 17, 2022

Thomas J. Rhoads, 56, of Fleetwood, passed away on Saturday, September 17, 2022 at his home in the presence of his loving family.

Born June 25, 1966 in Reading, he was the son of the late Ray L. and Vunnie V.L. (McAbee) Rhoads. He and his wife of 23 years, Sharliene A. Bowers, were married on November 18, 1998 in Reading, PA.

Tom was Chief of Department for the Ruscombmanor Township Fire Department for the last 13 years. He started as a junior firefighter in 1982 and held multiple positions over his many years of service. Tom also worked for many years serving his community as a police officer for the Centre Township, Oley and Fleetwood Police Departments. Tom also spent time as a fingerprint technician for the BCIU, the Supervisor of Adult Community Service Participants for the County of Berks Adult Probation Department and also drove truck working for Pinnacle Refrigeration, Fleetwood, Dunkin Donuts, Wixon's Bakery, Shillington and Bohrer-Reagan Mechanical Contractor, Blandon.

Tom was a very active mason. He was a member of St. John's Lodge #435, F & AM, Reading from 2008 until his passing. He served as Worshipful Master in 2016, 2017 & 2018. Tom was also a member of the Rajah Shrine where he was a member of the Provost Guard and Past Masters Club, a member of the Scottish Rite and a member of the Grand Holy Royal Arch Chapter of Pennsylvania #152, Reading. Tom also was a member of the Order of Eastern Star, Reading Chapter 251, where he served as Worthy Patron from 2018-2019.

In addition to his wife, Sharliene, Tom is survived by his brothers and sisters, William K. Rhoads, husband of Denise Rhoads, Ephrata, Ray L. Rhoads, Jr., husband of Ellen Rhoads, Palmerton, Davilyn M. Rhoads-Wentzel, Whitehall, Marvis A. Rhoads, Pricetown, and Vanessa M. Stoudt, Virginia and by many nieces and nephews.

Along with his parents, Tom was preceded in death by his brother Robert D. Rhoads.

Funeral Services for Tom will be held on Saturday, September 24, 2022 at 11:00 am at Walbert Funeral Home & Crematory, 14390 Kutztown Rd, Fleetwood, PA. Burial will follow in New Jerusalem Union Cemetery, Rockland Township.

A viewing for Tom will be held Saturday from 9:00 am to 11:00 am at the funeral home.

Walbert Funeral Home & Crematory, Fleetwood, is honored to be caring for our dear friend Tom and his family. Online condolences may be offered at WalbertFuneralHome.com.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Chief Thomas J. Rhoads, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Viewing - Public

Saturday, September 24, 2022

9:00 - 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Walbert Funeral Home & Crematory

14390 Kutztown Road, Fleetwood, PA 19522

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Walbert Funeral Home & Crematory

14390 Kutztown Road, Fleetwood, PA 19522

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Committal Service

Saturday, September 24, 2022

12:15 - 12:30 pm (Eastern time)

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