top of page

In Memoriam

Hail and Farewell
Through many countries and over many seas
I have come, Brother, to these melancholy rites,
to show this final honor to the dead,
and speak (to what purpose?) to your silent ashes,
since now fate takes you, even you, from me.

Oh, Brother, ripped away from me so cruelly,
now at least take these last offerings, blessed
by the tradition of our parents, gifts to the dead.
Accept, by custom, what a brother’s tears drown,
and, for eternity, Brother, ‘Hail and Farewell’.
                 -Gaius Valerius Catullus
IMG_0463 (2).jpg

Dr. Thomas Joe "Tom" Hildebrand,
MSG (Ret), US Army Special Forces

We lost Tom to natural causes on August 27, 2021.  Tom grew up on a farm in Seymour, Indiana with his three siblings, After graduating from Seymour High School in 1977, Tom joined the US Army Special Forces. Tom trained to be a Special Forces Medic and paramedic and was also a weapons expert, ski instructor, Army Ranger and much more. The Army wanted him to go to West Point, but Special Forces was where Tom wanted to be. He traveled the world on different missions  and served as a Team SGT for a detachment. Tom was stationed in Lebanon and Somalia, and he helped Kurdish refugees escape danger over mountainous territory during Desert Storm in Iraq and even ran a vital field hospital.  

Funeral Date: Saturday, September 04, 2021


Funeral Location: 1:00 p.m., Saturday, September 4, 2021, Celebration of Life Service will be at the St. Paul Lutheran Church, 10792, N. County Road 210 E., Seymour, Indiana, 47274


Clergy: Pastor Steve Wood of the St. Paul Lutheran Church of Seymour, Indiana.


Burial: St. Paul Lutheran Church Cemetery (Borchers) in Seymour, Indiana .

Visitation: 11:00 a.m., to 1:00 p.m., Saturday, September 4, 2021, at the St. Paul Lutheran Church, 10792 N. County Road 210 E., Seymour, Indiana, 47274.

***** A Gathering of Family and Friends will be held at a later date. *****

Next to Special Forces, Tom loved his job as the White County Veterans Service Officer, which he held for almost 10 years. He was dedicated to the military community and their families and initiated and championed several programs such as van transportation to get veterans to their medical appointments and he supported the PTSD program and held a Commanders Meeting for all the veterans clubs each month. Tom also helped organize Veterans Day and Memorial Day programs for the county and school system and promoted having a Veterans Court program in White County. Many of you reading this know first-hand how he helped veterans and families in need. Tom always went above and beyond to leave no veteran or their families behind. It has been said that Tom took care of his veterans before himself. Because of his dedication and medical background, Tom was very successful in helping veterans with their claims and medical issues. At the time of his death, Tom was the Mary T Klinker Chapter 27 Disabled American Veterans Commander and a member of many other veterans clubs, including the Special Forces Association.  He will be sorely missed.


Zane Koester
Chief Warrant Officer 3 (Ret), US Army Special Forces

Zane fell ill with COVID-19 and passed away on December 31st, 2020.  Chief Z was a very popular member of the chapter, and joined the Regiment in 1968.  He deployed many times and served in Afghanistan in 2001 with the 19th SFG(A).  He retired from the army in 2005 and also retired from the US Postal Service.  He is greatly missed.

bottom of page