Thomas Marvin Tonkin
11/27/1935 - 08/17/2022
Thomas Tonkin, 86, passed away at home on August 17th in Sarasota, Florida.
He was born in 1935 in Chicago and earned a bachelor’s degree in history and political science from Northwestern University.
He joined the Foreign Service in 1959 and was posted to Rio de Janeiro. In 1962 he was transferred to Washington DC and was then assigned to study Latin American Affairs at Stanford University.
His next assignment was to Panama City where he served as a political officer from 1965-1968. He served in the same capacity in Buenos Aires from 1968-1972 followed by two years as Chief of Argentine Affairs in Washington. At this point, he resigned from the State Department and took a position with DuPont, working in Sao Paolo Brazil and Wilmington DE from 1974-1985.
After taking early retirement from DuPont he rejoined the Foreign Service and was posted for three years to Caracas as Labor Attache. From 1988-90 he served as Political Counselor in Guatemala. His next assignment was to Dublin as Deputy Chief of Mission where he remained until 1992. He then returned to Caracas as Political Counselor from 1993-1996. His final posting was for two years as Political Counselor in the US Mission to the Organization of American States after which he retired with his wife Peg Tams, also a Foreign Service officer, to Sarasota Florida where they lived happily for 24 years. During those years they spent many months traveling to places they had always wanted to see but were never posted to. He is survived by his wife Peg, his daughter and son Vanessa and Tom Tonkin.
Private services will be held in Italy where Tom’s ashes will be laid to rest on the family farm.