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Saturday, June 27, 2015

Thomas Leo Irons, 76, formerly of Bradford, PA

Thomas Leo Irons
Thomas Leo Irons, 76, formerly of Bradford, PA, passed away, June 27, 2015 at the Bradford Manor.

Born July 18, 1938 in Olean, NY, he was the son of the late William Ellis and Katherine (Fitzgerald) Irons.

On September 18, 1976 in Bemus Point he married Barbara (Pfurtscheller) Irons who survives.

Tom was a 1956 graduate of Otto High School. In the summer of 1956, Tom signed a professional baseball contract with the Cleveland Indians and played for their minor league team in Parma, Ohio.
US Army Vet

On November 2, 1961 he enlisted in the United States Army where he was stationed in San Antonio, Texas. He was honorably discharged on November 1, 1963.

He worked for Kendall Refining Company and later American Refinery Group (ARG) until his retirement in 2004 as a Supervisor with over 46 years of Service.

During his time in the Army, Tom developed his skills as a fast pitch softball pitcher. After returning to the Bradford area, he began to play in several leagues, honing his craft and quickly became a local legend for his pitching prowess. The “Ironman” was a local fixture at Marcus Park in Olean, NY and many other softball communities in the area during the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s. He won countless awards, set numerous records and was part of several league championship and travel team championships – including finishing 4th in the nation during the 1977 ASA National Championship in Nashville, TN where Tom beat the eventual champion team Little Creek. Tom officially retired from Softball in 1988 and was rewarded for his efforts by being inducted into the Western NY Softball HOF.

Surviving in addition to his wife Barbara of 38 years are two sons, William Thomas (Jamie) Irons of Allegany, NY, and Joseph Peter (Julie) Irons of Lakewood, NY, five sisters: Mary Lou (George) Gigliotti of Bradford, Ruth Boyle of Duke Center; Wanda Livak of Salamanca, Peg Irons of Atlanta, GA, Beth (Robert) Kaczmarek of Duke Center, two brothers: Francis Fitzgerald of Sheffield, and James (Mary Lou) Irons of Eldred, five grandchildren: Quinn Ashlynn Irons, Nolan Thomas Irons, Jack Thomas Irons, Leo Robert Irons, Aubrey Ann Irons and countless nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, and four brothers, William Irons, Rex Irons, Gordon Irons, and Gilbert Irons.

Family will be receiving friends on Tuesday, June 30, 2015 from 5:00pm to 8:00pm in the Hollenbeck-Cahill Funeral Homes, Inc., 372 East Main St., immediately following the visitation, family and friends of the “Ironman” are invited to continue to celebrate his life at the Village Green in Olean. Friends will again be received on Wednesday from 10:00am to 11:00am at the funeral home, where funeral and committal services will be held with Father Stephen Collins, Pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Church officiating. Burial will be in Grimes Cemetery, Port Allegany.

Memorials, if desired, may be made to Alzheimer’s Association, 1128 State Street Suite 301, Erie, PA 16501


Anonymous said...

RIP TOM. One of the greatest Fast Pitch Softball pitchers of all time!

Anonymous said...

I also remember him my dad was his catcher so fun to watch he was the best