Tom joined the crew of this newspaper in 1917, while he was a student at St. Agnes High School. He started in the pressroom as an assistant pressman, coming on the job at 1 a.m. And continuing his work until school time.
Following his graduation from St. Agnes High School in 1920, he became a full-time employee and in 1922 he began setting type as a Linotype operator. His brother John, who died in 1982, worked at his side for many years.
In 1964, when The Review switched over from the hot type process to off-set printing, Tom was named head machinist by the Towanda Printing Company. To prepare for the new assignment, he attended the Merganthaler School in New York and Brooklyn. Later he attended a school in Chicago to master the intricate machinery of a teletype.
Tom was honored by the company with a surprise celebration on the job in recognition of 60 years of loyal and dedicated service. At the time of his retirement, on March 17, 1978, he was assistant night foreman.
A son of the late William E. and Mary Walsh Burchill, he was born in Towanda on June 26, 1903, and will be remembered as a friend to people of all ages. He had a keen mind and great sense of humor, which remained with him until the time of his death.
On June 30, 1937 he was married to the former Alice Byrne in SS. Peter and Paul Church. The nuptial mass was celebrated by another brother, the Rev. William Burchill, who went on to become a monsignor prior to his death in 1970. Two years after the marriage, the Burchills purchased a residence at 315 State Street and that has been their home ever since.
Tom was a lifetime communicant of SS. Peter and Paul Church. He served for many years as treasurer of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, which is now inactive in the parish, and was a member of the Holy Name Society and the Knights of Columbus.
Until his death Tom was a stockholder of the First National Bank of Bradford County and was very proud to also serve as proxy. He was also a member of the Townada Building and Loan, an association that was active in the 1940s.
Tom was an avid sports fan and was known to his family and friends as the sports trivia expert. Several of his grandchildren took great delight in spending hours on end quizing him on sports-related issues, and Tom nearly always delivered the historical facts they were questioning. Tom was at ease with the very young and the very old and endeavored to instill that attribute to his seven children.
They are: Mary Alice, wife of John Demangone of Towanda; Ann M. Burchill of Arlington, Va.; William Edmund Burchill of McLean, Va.; Elizabeth, wife of Dr. James Hofmann of Hanover; Ellen, wife of Michael Aherne of Kingsley; Karen, wife of Roger Sparrow of Boling Brook, Ill.; and Thomas J. Burchill, Jr., of Elmira, N.Y.
Survivors, in addition to his wife and children, are two sisters, Mary Teresa and Elizabeth Burchill of Towanda; two brothers, Richard P. Burchill of Johnson City, N.Y., and Dr. Joseph M. Burchill of Levittown; 22 grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated in SS Peter and Paul Church on Saturday at 11 a. m. Interment will be in the parish cemetery in North Towanda.
Friends may call at the Maryott-Bowen Funeral Home, 217 York Ave., today from 2 to 9 p.m. Members of the family will be present from 2 to 4 and 7 to9 p.m. There will be a recitation of the rosary at 8 p.m. The family has requested that memorials to Tom Burchill be directed in his name to the Towanda Memorial Hospital Building Fund.
The Daily Review (Towanda, PA) - 1984