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Thomas Matthew Cheever

Thomas Matthew "TC" Cheever, 43, of Somerville, formerly of Wakefield, died on Wednesday, January 16, 2013 following a fierce battle with pancreatic cancer.  He was surrounded by family and friends and his father and uncle were holding his hands.

He was born at the Cambridge City Hospital on December 12, 1969, moved with his parents to Wakefield in 1972, and welcomed his brother, Daniel, in 1973.  The brothers would remain close throughout their lives.

Tom’s passion for performance and humor developed at an early age.  He was a fixture on Wakefield High School's educational access TV, WHS-TV Channel 16 with his show, Trivia Live!  The show’s live, spontaneous format showcased Tom's quick wit, his remarkable sense of humor, and his encyclopedic knowledge.  The TV show endeared him to many Wakefield residents, including one who would go on to become his collaborator and life-long friend, Steve Hoey.

Tom's other passion in high school was his study of Latin.  He attended many National Junior Classical League Conventions, and it was here that he met his friend and kindred spirit Hal Rather, whose untimely death from Leukemia at the age of 22 would inspire Tom to run the Walt Disney World Marathon in 2004, an event he considered one of his greatest accomplishments 

Tom attended Dean College, studying radio broadcasting and production, interning first at 92 PRO-FM in Providence, and then at WFNX in Lynn.  He was thrilled to be part of the Boston music scene, rubbing shoulders with some of his favorite musicians and radio personalities.

Tom joined the improvisational comedy troupe Renegade Duck in 1992, and from then on would be known as “TC Cheever”, the name by which so many friends call him and the name with which he wrote and performed for the rest of his life.  He went on to perform with ImprovBoston, Musical Improv Company, the Gold Dust Orphans, Boston News Net, and the 48-Hour Film Festival.  He was able to pursue another great passion, musical theater, through ImprovBoston, and wrote and directed scripted musicals including What The Dickens?!, and An Evening With Ladley and Craig. 

More than performing, more than his friends, more even than The Beatles, Tom’s greatest passion and accomplishment was his three children.  Annabelle, Theo, and Harry were the guide stars by which he set his course through life. His final years were incredibly happy thanks to his partner Gillian, whose love and compassion filled his heart and soul with happiness and laughter in both good times and bad.

Tom is survived by his father, Thomas J., and his brother, Daniel B., of Wakefield; by his three amazing children, Annabelle D., Theodore J., and Harry J., and their mother Jenney, of Wakefield; by his loving partner, Gillian Mackay-Smith, of Somerville; and by his countless devoted friends the world over.

Relatives and friends are invited to a memorial celebration of his life to be held at The Center for Arts at the Armory, 191 Highland Avenue, Somerville on February 2, 2013 from 6:00-10:00pm. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Tom’s memory to the TC Cheever Family Trust. Donations may be sent to Eastern Bank, 445 Main Street, Wakefield, MA 01880.  A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Tucker Gosnell Center for Gastrointestinal Cancers at the Massachusetts General Hospital.

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