The following short reflection was written by Jim Carter '54, a former member of the Fenn faculty, about his dear colleague and friend.
Tom Beal, an English teacher at Fenn from 1979 to 1993 died on June 13, 2017. Tom was a gentle, kind, thoughtful man who was a lot funnier than he realized. He came to Fenn from Rivers and found a home here where he was universally loved and respected. One of his greatest contributions to Fenn is today’s yearbook. Before he arrived the yearbook was the 3rd edition of that year’s Lantern, the school’s literary magazine. It included a paragraph on each graduate, a summary of sports teams’ seasons and a lot of poetry and fiction. It was created by someone’s secretary typing up a lot of stencils which were run through the mimeograph machine by students and collated by them. Tom taught the boys how to put together a very professional, hard cover yearbook which was a vast improvement over the old yearbooks. I personally remember Tom always wearing a heavy tweed jacket often with a sweater even on warm spring and fall days, and in the winter always a heavy winter coat. The third thing I will remember him for is his notebook (look at the photo). He carried a tattered old notebook with him everywhere, ASM, faculty meetings, lunch, department meetings, and everywhere he noted down interesting, funny, odd, weird, clever, embarrassing statements from faculty and students. These he would share with us at the end of the year Balloon Dinner, all in good fun and because it was Tom it was good fun. He was a wonderful colleague, a gentle, kind and caring teacher, a great asset to Fenn while he was here. He will be missed. --Jim Carter
Please find Tom's obituary online.