Member News

Obituary: Thomas Walter Brunk, 1949 - 2018

by SAH News | Nov 28, 2018

Thomas Walter Brunk, age 68 of Detroit and formerly of Romeo passed away Thursday, November 15, 2018 surrounded by those that cared for him. He was born November 25, 1949 the son of Norman and Margie Velma (Smith) Brunk in Romeo. He graduated from Romeo High School and then studied at La Sorbonne in Paris where he studied French, Art History and Archival History. He received a Masters Degree of Arts in Art and Architectural History, Norwich University, 1992 and received his Doctorate in Philosophy of Art History from the Union Institute.

     Thomas is a member of Detroit Lodge #2 F&A.M., a member of Detroit Commandery #1 K.T. and became a 32nd Degree Mason in the Valley of Detroit. He was a member of Monroe #1 chapter and council.   He was a curator at the Detroit Masonic Temple Library and Museum, Detroit, since 2001.

     His vast career included Clerk Coordinator at Severstal North America in Dearborn since 1971, United Auto Workers Local 600, since 1971. He was a founder and past president of the Indian Village History Collections, Inc., Detroit, 1973-1992. He was Past president of the Stapleton Foundation for Health Education, Wayne State University, 1980-1995, Friends of the Freer House, since 1981. He was an Instructor of Architectural History and Art History, College for Creative Studies, Detroit, since 2001, Merrill-Palmer Institute Wayne State University, Detroit, since 2003. Guest curator Michigan State University, Detroit, 1976, Detroit Institute Arts, 1976, Detroit History Museum, 1978, 79, 81, 84, member advisory board, since 2006. Guest curator University Michigan Museum Art, Ann Arbor, 1995-1996, Kresge Art Museum, Michigan State University, 2004-2005, Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum Saginaw Valley State University, 2006. President of The Pewabic Society, Inc., Detroit, 1988-1989. Advisory board Detroit History Museum, since 2004.

     Thomas will be remembered for being a friend to so many. He often said “Never forget your friends.”

From SAH member Janet Kreger, "We only learned on Monday morning of the death of our colleague and friend, Dr. Thomas W. Brunk, on November 15th.  Thom was a supporter and ally of the Michigan Historic Preservation, and, importantly, had an unparalleled breadth and depth of expertise in Detroit’s history, architecture, art, crafts, and social and intellectual life."

Read full obituary and arrangements here

Dr. Brunk was an SAH member from 1989 through 2008.


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