Burnt Hills-Thomas E. Kana passed away peacefully on March 27, 2020 at the St. Francis Medical Center in Colorado Springs, CO. He was 64. Tom was born at Ellis Hospital in Schenectady, NY on December 31,1955 the son of the late Doreen C. Kana and Charles H. Kana of Coburg Village, Rexford, NY. Tom's family lived in Glenville and Tom's education was in the Burnt Hills Ballston Lake School District. Tom graduated in the Class of 1974. He was a member of the National Honor Society and played varsity football and baseball. Tom also played in the Connie Mack Baseball League. He served as an altar boy at the Church of the lmmaculate Conception and was also a Gazette delivery boy. ln addition to Tom's love for baseball he treasured those times on Lake George boating and island tenting with his family. Along with his two brothers they took pleasure in helping their Grandfather perform the routine maintenance tasks at
"The Camp" at Hulett's Landing, NY. While pursuing his professional career Tom always cherished those rare occasions when he could return to Camp for a few days.
ln the Spring of L974 Tom received an appointment to the Air Force Academy from the late Representative Sam Stratton. Tom entered the Academy in June of 1974 and graduated with honors in the Class of 1978 and was a proud member of the baseball team. Tom's basic pilot's training was at Laughlin AFB in Del Rio, TX. His career path took him to Minot, ND flying B-52's and then to Pease AFB in New Hampshire flying FB-111’s. Each of these assignments were with SAC during the Cold War Era. At this point in Tom's career he had achieved the rank of Command Pilot.
On April 16, 1983 Tom married Susan K. Stanton, a resident of Annapolis, MD. Arrangements were made to have the wedding ceremony performed at the Naval Academy Chapel, and for one half hour on the 16th, the Chapel was under siege by former Air Force Academy cadets. A wonderful reception followed and then it was back to Minot, ND.
ln March 1987 Tom was selected for training at Test Pilot School in Edward's Air Force Base in California. He graduated in the summer of 1988. He then spent one additional year as an instructor and advisor on the B-2 Stealth bomber Project. During the initial aerial refueling of the B-2 Tom was the pilot of the KC-10 tanker. His next assignment was at the Air Force Academy as an instructor in Aeronautical Engineering. After sixteen years in the Air Force Tom decided to exercise an option for early retirement. Soon after he accepted a position with Twentieth Century lnvestments in Kansas City, MO as Director of corporate flight operations. He held this position for five years and then sought out his dream of flying commercially. In December 1999 he began with Delta Air Lines which continued for fifteen years. At the time of his retirement he was First Officer on 757's and 767' s flying out of LAX.
Tom seldom had any idle moments. He and Sue enjoyed their large acreage in Monument, CO. Tom was a certified SCUBA diver and had climbed several of the high peaks in Colorado. He enjoyed the game of golf and tooling around on his John Deere lawn mower. Tom and his family took several cruises with his in-laws and parents to Alaska, the Mediterranean, The Scandinavian Countries and the Caribbean. Who could forget Tom's love and compassion for his two big dogs Abby and Homer. Tom's foremost passion was reading. He was seldom without a book and sometimes as many as three. Tom was a true patriot, a scholar, an academic and oh yes, a baseball player.
ln addition to his father, Tom is survived by his wife Susan of Colorado Springs, his daughters; Laura of Colorado Springs, daughter Jillian of Lakewood, CO. his two brothers Dr. Daniel Kana of Bedford, NH, Dr. Stephen Kana of Spartanburg, SC, his sister Kathleen Lombardo of Newtown Square, PA. and several nephews and nieces. Funeral services and burial will be at the Air Force Academy in the fall.
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