Thomas Eli ‘Topsekok’ Menadelook, Jr.
Thomas Eli ‘Topsekok’ Menadelook, Jr., was born March 17, 1964 in Teller, Alaska, to Thomas and Mary Menadelook. He lived in Teller and Diomede as a child. He attended Mt. Edgecumbe High School until the school closed, and then attended Chemawa High School in Oregon, where he graduated.
While attending Chemawa he met the love of his life, Francene Laverne White. After high school they moved to Diomede and were married in 1986. They raised their five children on Diomede: Joshua, Samantha, Sonja, Celeste and Casey. While living on Diomede, Thomas, Jr., worked as a VPSO, power plant operator and Bering Strait School District maintenance manager. It was also on Diomede that Thomas bravely faced the challenge of losing a daughter to an accident, and then his wife to cancer, leaving him to raise his children on his own with the help of his mother.
Thomas decided to move to Nome, where he married Brenda Menadelook. In Nome, Thomas first worked for Norton Sound Regional Hospital in the maintenance department. He then moved to the Bering Straits Regional Housing Authority, as their lead maintenance man, and worked there until his last day. While their marriage eventually ended, it produced the birth of his adored youngest child, Brianna Menadelook.
Thomas went on to share his life with his last partner, Anne Marie Ozenna.
Thomas Jr., was a man of many things. He enjoyed living a subsistence lifestyle and providing for his extended family. Thomas Jr., successfully landed two bowhead whales on Diomede, in 1998 and 2005. His subsistence lifestyle was primarily hunting sea mammals: walrus, seals, oogruk, beluga, bowhead and polar bear.
He also enjoyed fishing for salmon and halibut, crabbing, birding, gathering murre eggs, hunting for moose, musk oxen, caribou and reindeer, and picking berries. In addition to hunting he loved to go boating and camping, taking drives in his truck and on his snowmachine, and caring for his family.
Thomas Jr., was preceded in death by his sister Marion and brother Charles; his father Thomas Sr.; his daughter Sonja; his wife Francene; his maternal grandparents John and Lillian Ahkvaluk; and his paternal grandparents Charles and Etta Menadelook.
Thomas Jr. is survived by his mother Mary Menadelook; siblings Eva, Veronica, Charles and Etta; his children Joshua, Samantha, Celeste, Casey and Brianna; his grandchildren Jennifer, Connor, Ronan, Ellia, Olivia, Grace, Jackson and Katherine; and nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, grand-nephews; and cousins.
Thomas Jr. was a son, brother, cousin, father, uncle, grandfather, grand-uncle and friend. He was a man of few words, with a very big heart. He will be missed for his great smile, humble personality, exceptional generosity and kindness.