THOMAS N. TONER, artist, college professor. My dad, 66, died unexpectedly on May 23, 2007, while
vacationing in Clearwater, Florida. He grew up in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania, and graduated from the Malvern Prep School,
where he ran track and played varsity football. Since I'm writing his obit, I can also reveal that he was in glee and the
musical clubs. He also drove a '57 Merc convertible called the Mouth Mobile according to his yearbook.
received his bachelor of fine art and master of fine art degrees in an unusual combined program from the University of
Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. At the Academy, he won the Cresson and Schiedt Memorial Scholarships
to tour Europe in 1963 and 1964, as well as the Faculty Thouron prize, the M. Herbert Syme and the Cecilia Beaux prizes.
He won a number of prizes at the Rittenhouse Square Art show in the early 60s, as well.
Dad joined the faculty
of St. Louis University in the fall of 1964, where he quickly rose to chairman of the Art and Art history Department. He
taught at St. Louis University until 1995.
His paintings show the influences of the Hudson river School, as
well as Thomas Eakins and Salvador Dali, and have been labeled Magic Realism. Over the years, he refined his style, reflecting
a masterful use of color and exquisite technique both in figurative works and landscapes. His works hang in the collections
of the late Nate Richter, the May and Busch families, and other U.S. professionals and industrialists. His paintings have
appeared in many universities, galleries as well as in the Baseball Hall of Fame at Cooperstown, New York. He has run
workshops in Copper Mountain (Colorado), Belize, and Maine.
He painted throughout his life, played tennis,
and joined a writing group after moving to Dallas in 2004 despite being afflicted with diabetes and chronic inflammatory
demylenating polyneuropathy in recent years. Since his Malvern Prep years, he had no problem playing injured.
He is survived by son Sean Toner of Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, and daughter Christi Goettsche of Boulder, Colorado, as
well as brother Robert Toner of Ocean City, New Jersey, and a number of cousins. He was pre-deceased by his beloved mother,
Mary H. Finucane Toner, who encouraged him to paint at an early age.