Obituary for Thomas N. Heath

Thomas Newton Heath, of Chaska, passed away at Auburn Manor on January 7, 2020, of complications following Heart Valve Replacement.

Born on October 23, 1928 and reared in North Carolina Tom graduated from Dover High School and attended the University of North Carolina. He joined the Navy in 1945, and after his four year stint was held for an additional year during the Korean War and was stationed in New Orleans at the Naval Supply Center. He moved on living in Norfolk, VA and then Philadelphia where he studied voice while working for the American Baptist Convention in Valley Forge. He sang professionally with the Philadelphia Oratorio Choir and in a Quartet in the Moravian Church where he became a member because he loved the music and traditions of the church so much. He later came to Minnesota, where he went to work in a publishing company, and lived in Prior Lake. The nearest Moravian Church was in Chaska, so he began to attend it. Moravian Friends decided to become Matchmakers intent on connecting him with another member, Marvel Rettman. It worked! They were married on Memorial Day in 1969 and relocated to Northfield, MN, where Marvel was an Assistant Dean at St. Olaf College. Tom was commuting to St. Paul so to shorten that commute they built a home on Bade Lane in Chaska, moving in to the house in 1970. Tom became a Trustee on the Board of the Chaska Moravian Church, later was a member of the Carver County Library Board, Blue Ribbon Winner of the Carver County Arts Consortium Poetry Contest, story teller and self-published author. He loved to cook, bake, share music and movies with friends, read and write. Lovingly referred to by his former co-workers as “Fig”, he will be joyfully remembered for all that he accomplished in his 91 plus years.

Tom was preceded in death by his parents, Clarence Wayne and Lovie Elizabeth (McCain) Heath, four Sisters, one brother, and his beloved wife, Marvel.

He is survived by many nieces and nephews, as well as scores of dear friends. 

Tom will be laid to rest at the Chaska Moravian Cemetery on May 30, 2020 in a private ceremony. A Memorial Service will later be webcast at:!/PhotosVideos Memorials preferred to the Moravian Care Foundation, 501 Oak St N, Chaska, MN 55318. Please designate for use in the Chaplaincy Program.

Eden Prairie Chapel 952-975-0400


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