Obituary: Judith Underwood Tome

Ms. Tome, 65, of Windermere, died Saturday, July 29, 2017.

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Local artist dies, leaves legacy for students

Judith Underwood Tome, 65, of Windermere, died peacefully Saturday, July 29, after her battle with bone cancer. 

A founding member of The Master’s Academy in Oviedo, Florida, Judi Tome established its award-winning Fine Arts program. An avid patron of the arts, Judi was committed to helping students discover their unique God-given talents. In August 2016, the Judi Tome Black Box Theatre was dedicated in her honor.

An art teacher for 25 years, Mrs. Tome taught kindergarten through 12th grade. Once she retired from the classroom, she was asked by Congressman Dan Webster to judge the Congressional Art Awards each year, which honors outstanding student artwork to be hung in the nation’s capitol. 

An invitation-only artist to the Walt Disney World annual Festival of the Masters, Judi loved to share Madonnari Italian street-painting chalk art with visitors to Downtown Disney. A Florida Chalk Artists Association member, Judi chalked annually in the “Spring Fever in the Garden” (Winter Garden) and other local festivals.

In 1996, Tome was first diagnosed with Stage 4 breast cancer and given a life expectancy of one to two years. She refused to be defined by a diagnosis and never stopped investing in the next generation. She had a special place in her heart for students. In 2014, Tome was diagnosed with Stage 4 metastatic bone cancer — her breast cancer had recurred in her bones. 

Most people never knew her diagnosis. She was a fighter and remained strong, upbeat and unstoppable. Her personal mission was to “live in light of eternity” — fully aware that eternity with Jesus was her destination and to leave this world better for the people who follow. 

A lifelong member of First Baptist Church of Pine Hills (now Church at the Cross), Judi was married there in 1973 to her love, Roger Dale Tome, who preceded her to eternity in 2014.

She is survived by her two daughters, Kristin (Tome) O’Brien (Windermere Councilman Jim O’Brien) and Karin Tome of Windermere; two grandchildren, Jacob and Emily O’Brien; her siblings, Kay Griffin (Don), Emily Cumbee (Jim), Hal Underwood (Cindy); and several nieces and nephews.


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