Thomas Jerome Setter of Salt Lake City, Utah passed away on February 19, 2019 surrounded by his family. He was 83 years old.
Tom was born in Moorhead, Minnesota on October 11, 1935, to Elvin and Armella (Rutten) Setter. He was the sixth child out of ten children. He went to elementary school at St. Joseph’s and then graduated from Moorhead Senior High School in 1953, where he fell in love with his high school sweetheart, Shirley Rosenfeldt Setter. After marrying Shirley and starting a family, Tom graduated from the University of North Dakota in 1956. Tom went on to be a 1960 graduate of Creighton University medical school. He completed his medical internship at Detroit Receiving Hospital. Loving his country, he served as a captain in the U.S. Army from 1962 to 1964 where he was in charge of the Armed Forces Examining Station. After the army, he completed his orthopedic surgery residency in the Detroit area. He opened his first private practice in Mount Clemens, Michigan from 1968 to 1977. Tom developed a love for skiing, which led him and his family to the beautiful state of Idaho. From July 1977, until his retirement in 1993, he practiced orthopedic surgery in Idaho Falls, Idaho. After his retirement, he and his lovely wife packed up and made the move to sunny Arizona. Tom stayed active in his profession, volunteering by offering his expertise all throughout Africa (Uganda and Tanzania) on eight separate humanitarian stays.
Tom was a leader in many different civic activities. While living in Idaho he was district governor for Rotary International, sponsoring 24 Paul Harris Fellows. Together, Tom and Shirley attended 12 Rotary International conventions in the U.S. South Korea, Mexico, Taiwan, Argentina, Australia, Canada, and Sweden. He was United Way Campaign Chairman in 1988-99, founder of the Eastern Idaho Technical College Foundation, and a board member for the Idaho Falls Chamber of Commerce, the Idaho State University Bengal Foundation, and a member of the Idaho Immunization Coalition. He was president of the Idaho Falls Medical Society from 1984-85, president of the Idaho Medical Association for 1987-88.Tom received numerous awards, among those Idaho Physician of the Year, 1990-91, United Way Seward K. French Award, the Idaho Falls Chamber of Commerce Service Award, and the “Idaho 8 Who Make a Difference” award.
Family could always count on his weekly phone calls to give life advice, whether it was warranted or not. Tom was also an avid Notre Dame football fan. Over the course of his life, he attended hundreds of games, both home and away with close friends and family. In every place Tom lived, he managed to find many like-minded souls who would gather around a breakfast table to discuss everything from sports, politics, and current events. He and Shirley hosted many family reunions filled with many outdoor activities, late night card games, laughter and love.
Tom Setter was preceded in death by his son Stephen, and by his siblings, Gerry Setter, Maxine Rutten, Jim Setter, Betty Fugere, and Don Setter. He is survived by Shirley, his wife of 63 years, their children Michael, Michele Morrison (Rob), Barb McCarthy (Mark), Mary Sloan (Chris), and Karen Cerchione (Mark), and his siblings, Dolores Marchand, Jean Danielson, Cathy Hinz and Peggy Abbott . He leaves 13 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
In his memory, be sure to enjoy a German pancake, a freshly baked German chocolate cake, a Klondike bar, or any other gooey treat that brings you happiness. And let’s not forget the circus peanuts!
There will be a celebration of life at a later date.
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Donations can be made to the Utah Food Bank or Fourth St. Clinic.