1951 - 2019
Tom Wilson was a valued, respected and loved member of the Scottish Motorsport Marshals Club.
For over 40 years, Tom's main pastime was motor sport, and his motor sport and rescue career was extensive. As well as marshalling at the monthly motor racing meetings at Ingliston in the late 1970s, he would regularly travel down south to Donington Park or Silverstone to marshal at big events.
After moving to London for work, he was in his element working all week and marshalling at Silverstone, Donington Park and Rockingham most weekends, with a yearly excursion to Le Mans.
When he returned to Dundee, he decided to slim down his long-distance motor racing activity and do more with the Scottish Motorsport Marshals Club and he joined the Motor Sport Rescue team. He even started going to spectate at things like the Goodwood Revival, where, as you would expect, he got right into the swing of dressing in period clothing.
Tom was a highly experienced marshal and Rescue Team member who volunteered at many events - from local club stage rallies to international Grand Prix races - from Brands Hatch to Croft to Knockhill, from the Isle of Mull to Abu Dhabi... and many, many more. As we say in Scotland, Tom was a well-kent face, and tributes from across the globe flooded in on social media over the last couple of weeks.
In 2018, Tom was the very worthy recipient of the Jim Clark Marshalling Award. The Award is made to such member of the Scottish Motorsport Marshals Club who, in the sole opinion of the Committee, has made a significant or meritorious contribution to motor sport marshalling in Scotland.
Club Secretary Rod Howat, who with others in the team worked with Tom on the Rescue Units, said, “Tom was one of the most generous people I have ever known in every respect.”
Long-standing friend Paul Moscrop recalls how he and Tom had been best mates for well over 30 years. They met at Silverstone and both went on to do rescue together. Paul says, “Tom was such a big-hearted man. He loved to be around people always having a laugh. I will miss him so much and so will so many others.”
Wherever Tom went he made friends and made people laugh, such was his infectious nature – at work and with the various social events and marshalling with all the different clubs.
One of his oldest friends, Alan Martin, said "I know I will miss him terribly. Tom was one in a million, a great and loyal friend, the life and soul of every party, and one of life’s real treasures. Gone but never to be forgotten."
Alan recalls one of the last conversations he had with Tom. They were talking about the arrangements for the funeral – a slightly morbid and difficult subject – but as always, Tom introduced some levity to the discussion. Talking about his clothes for the day – Alan mentioned that a nice suit might be appropriate, or perhaps one of Tom's amazing Goodwood outfits. "Na…" said Tom, and with a wry smile on his face he added, "I've decided on my Nomex fireproof rescue overalls. I hope they got extra gas in and can turn up the heat – they’ll need to!"
At Tom's funeral, Remember Me, a poem by painter and poet David Harkins, was read out:
You can shed tears that he is gone
Or you can smile because he has lived.
You can close your eyes and pray that he will come back
Or you can open your eyes and see all that he has left.
Your heart can be empty because you can’t see him
Or you can be full of the love that you shared.
You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday
Or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.
You can remember him and only that he is gone
Or you can cherish his memory and let it live on.
You can cry and close your mind, be empty and turn your back
Or you can do what he would want: smile, open your eyes, love and go on.
We have said goodbye to a true gent, a motorsport legend and an all-round good egg! He will leave a huge void in the lives of those who knew him. Time will ease that, but we will miss him terribly. His dedication, enthusiasm, intelligence and sense of humour will be remembered.
Rest in peace, dear friend.