In Memory

Thomas Makowski - Class Of 1957 VIEW PROFILE

Thomas Makowski


Thomas J. Makowski
April 17, 1939 - Feb. 11, 2021

Thomas J. Makowski, 81, of Paw Paw, Michigan, formerly of South Bend, Indiana, passed away at 12:40 p.m. Thursday, February 11, 2021, in Bronson Methodist Hospital, Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Tom was born on April 17, 1939 to Casimer and Genevieve (Janowiak) Makowski in his family's home on Walnut Street in South Bend. After graduating from Washington High School, Tom proudly served in the United States Air Force in the Military Police K9 unit, traveling to and around Europe while forging life long friendships and vivid memories, including running with the bulls in Pamplona.

After serving in the Air Force, Tom went to work at Studebaker until it closed, followed by the South Bend Water Works Department. Tom found a home with AM General where he worked his way up to management and eventually retired after 38 years.

On May 8, 1965, in the former St. Mary of the Assumption Catholic Church, Tom married Charlotte Balogh in a blowout celebration with over 800 friends and family members.

Growing up in South Bend, Tom was a diehard Notre Dame football fan who instilled a love of the sport in all his children. Tom led his life with kindness, and was known for his love for his family, his loyalty to his friends, his good-humored nature, and his strong faith. He was exceptionally light on his feet and he loved to dance the polka.

Tom was an expert craftsman who loved woodworking and detailed construction. Tom personally built his dream home on Three Mile Lake in Paw Paw, Michigan where he and Charlotte retired. Tom loved fishing with his wife, family, and friends and you could frequently find him peacefully enjoying the lake views and sunsets from his Notre Dame chair on his deck.

Tom deeply loved his wife, children and grandchildren and was so very proud of each of them. Tom is survived by his adoring family members including his wife, Charlotte; two daughters, Stephanie (Tony) Rucano of Granger, Indiana and Cynthia (Jason) Branciforte of Oakton, Virginia; one son, Christopher (Stacy) Makowski of Peru, Indiana; five grandchildren, Camille, Zachary, Maxwell, Samuel and Molly; one sister, Michelene Kay of South Bend, Indiana; one brother, Ralph Makowski of Buchanan, Michigan; and many nieces, nephews, and godchildren.

Tom was preceded in death by his son Nicholas; his parents; stepfather, Floyd McCaige; and sister, Patricia.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 12:30 p.m., Thursday, February 18, 2021, at St. Pius X Church. The Mass will be livestreamed at or Burial will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery.

Calling hours will be from 2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, in the Kaniewski Funeral Home, 3545 N. Bendix Drive, where a Rosary will be prayed at 5:00 p.m.. Calling hours will also be from 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. on Thursday in St. Pius X Church.

In lieu of flowers please consider making a contribution to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital (see To send online condolences, please visit



02/15/2021 JFC

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