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Obituary: Thomas Harkins

Tom Harkins, age 59, passed away suddenly on Oct. 21, 2011. Tom was a resident of Port Washington since 1981 and had been involved in his community through his instrumental efforts in support of the PYA ballfield and his custom painting and wallpapering business offered to many residents over the years. Tom grew up in Uniondale and was a graduate of Chaminade High School and Niagara University. He was the loving, former husband of Port Washington-native Stacey (Long). He was loved by many but most of all by his children, Michael and Emily Harkins, both of Port Washington. Tom was a wonderful brother to nine siblings, Colleen Reid, Mary Ellen Saasto, Terri Harkins-Jaisle, Eilleen Boyle, Ken, Pat Hogan, John, Elizabeth Sansone, and Anne Franzino. His special wit and humor will never be forgotten by his 25 nieces and nephews, Michael, Scott and Brian Reid, Ryan and Kim Saasto, Matthew and Dan Jaisle, Tim, Caitlin and Erin Boyle, Jessica and Sean Harkins, Chris, Brendan and Kelly Hogan, Sarah and Kate Harkins, Kyle and Kira Sansone, Thomas Franzino, Kristen, John, Christopher, Jessica and Erica Zahn. Tom will also be deeply missed by numerous cousins including Jessica McManus and her children Jacquelyn, Jordan and Julianne McManus and cousin Suzanne Andersen and her children Cody and Natalie Andersen. Additionally, first cousins from the McGinley and Condon families were always an important part of Tom’s life. Tom was considered a second son to a special uncle, Jack Rininger. Tom was predeceased by his parents, Ann and Thomas Harkins, and a treasured niece, Caitlin Boyle.

Tommy had a way of making people feel lighthearted and reminding them to enjoy life. Take things with stride, and have gratitude for family and friends. You never knew when he would show up (or leave), but during the time he was there, we were blessed to have him nearby, and enjoy the time together. He did not judge others, he saw the good in people and respected people’s opinion, without taking it personal. I never met one person that had anything bad to say about Tommy, other than his inability to commit to Easter dinner.

Arrangements were made by Austin F. Knowles Funeral Home, Port Washington with a viewing from 7 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 27 and a memorial service held at Shelter Rock Church on Plandome Rd., Manhasset, at 11 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 28. Memorial donations to the American Heart Association would be welcome.