Forums General Discussion Passing of USFG President Tom Maxwell

  • Passing of USFG President Tom Maxwell

    Posted by drsue on October 18, 2016 at 5:07 pm

    Thomas McKinley Maxwell (July 2, 1946 – October 16, 2016)

    I met Tom at the Franklin Faceters Frolic in 2012 as he was taking over the running of the frolic from Will and Roy. He roped me into helping him with the first frolic website. When an opening arose, he convinced me to take on the duties of treasurer for the the USFG. So much for retirement! I worked closely with him when he assumed the role of president of the USFG. We enjoyed meeting up in Tucson and spending a week at the beach with he and Joan, drinking wine and talking rocks. He provided suggestions and moral support for many of us as we coped with diagnoses of cancer in our loved ones. I cannot begin to express what a loss this is, for many of us.

    Sue Lichtenberger
    USFG Treasurer

    Thomas McKinley Maxwell, 70, passed away peacefully and surrounded by family on Sunday, October 16, 2016. Tom was born on July 2, 1946, in Madison, Wisconsin. His family moved to South Carolina where he attended A.C. Flora High School in Columbia, followed by the U.S. Naval Academy and the University of South Carolina. An avid golfer, Tom played competitive golf in high school and college and was on the varsity golf team at the U.S. Naval Academy. While the majority of his career was spent in the structural steel industry, he became deeply interested in rocks, gemstones and gemstone faceting later in life. His hobby became his passion and eventually he became an instructor of faceting at the William Holland School of Lapidary in Young Harris Georgia. He was also the President of the United States Faceters Guild as well as the owner of Carolina Custom Gems in partnership with Beckham’s Barn Rock and Gem Shop in Irmo, S.C. He enjoyed vacationing on Myrtle Beach and Pawleys Island, S.C., and doting on his pets.

    He is survived by his beloved companion of 16 years, Joan Enlow Beckham; his sister, Melissa Schiavone (Andrew); his former spouse, Lilla Plowden Maxwell; his children, Ellen DeFusco (Bruce), Edward Maxwell, and Laura Hilsen (Scott); his nephew, Drew Schiavone; his niece, Chandler Schiavone; and his grandchildren, Brooke DeFusco, Brittany Hughes, Sean Maxwell, Maxwell Hilsen, Josh Hilsen, and Tommy Hilsen. He was predeceased by his parents, Cmdr. W. Robert Maxwell and Marjorie Saulpaw Maxwell; and his son, William Robert Maxwell II.

    Visitation will be held from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 21, at Dunbar Funeral Home, 3926 Devine Street. Services will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22, at St. Martin’s-In-The-Fields Episcopal Church, 5220 Clemson Avenue.

    The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Thomas McKinley Maxwell be made to the Cancer Research Institute, One Exchange Plaza, 55 Broadway, Suite 1802, New York, NY 10006, or by calling (800) 99-CANCER or donating online at

    Alan Balmer replied 7 years, 9 months ago 2 Members · 1 Reply
  • 1 Reply
  • Alan Balmer

    October 18, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    Tom was a good friend, I will miss him greatly. Please take the opportunity to make a donation in his name, and to pray for the millions who suffer from cancer. The Cancer Research Institute is a highly rated charity. Let’s eliminate this disease that has taken so many of our friends and loved ones.

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