In Memory

Tom Jacobson

Tom Jacobson unexpectedly passed away on Thursday, May 1, 2014 surrounded by his family. Tom was born in Billings, the first son of Paul and Mary Lou Jacobson and graduated from Billings Senior High School in 1967. Tom continued his education at Rocky Mountain College earning a degree in Business Economics. While in college, Tom married Julie and had two sons, Michael and Steven.

Tom began what would turn out to be a lengthy career in the food distribution business at Associated Foods. He went to work for Pacific Gamble Robinson as a warehouseman, delivery driver, salesman and produce buyer. Tom was promoted to branch president and worked to grow his PGR branch into the regional Food Services of America. Tom, Julie and son Steven founded the Grand Bagel Company and developed the first traditional NY style bagels in Billings. Tom enjoyed his mornings working out at the BAC and afternoons socializing at Billings Army Navy Surplus. Tom and Julie recently retired to begin spending more time with family and at their cabin outside Red Lodge. Tom treasured working on the cabin and spending time in the mountains. Tom loved his family and became a topnotch grandfather.

Tom was preceded in death by his father, Paul in 1998. Tom is survived by his wife, Julie; his sons Michael and Steven (Nikki); and grandchildren Paul, Hunter and Claire. He is also survived by his mother, Mary Lou Jacobson; his sister Kim (Larry) Brander; his brother Dean.

go to bottom 
  Post Comment

04/23/17 02:51 PM #1    

Richard (Dick) Morrow

My friendship with Jake started at Senior High. He came to Senior from Lewis & Clark JH and I was from Lincoln JH.  There was a dual friendship that developed. It was impossible to say Jake without adding… and Julie.  Julie Culver was a Lewis & Clark JH student that went out west, West High Class of ’67.  In the summer of 1968 I attended Tom and Julie’s wedding. 

Tom and Julie represented to me what good family values meant along with having that old Montana work ethic.  I remember enjoying a couple beers from an iced tub with Tom in the backyard of one of their early residences, one of the log cabins along Avenue F, when Tom graduated from Rocky Mountain College after several years of working nights while going to college.

When Pat and I would be visiting family in Billings and fortunate enough to coordinate a visit with Tom and Julie, we would always feel the years easily melt away as we recalled stories from yesterdays.  I would also sense the joys of life that Tom and Julie shared, raising 2 sons, developing the successful Grand Bagel Company, spoiling 3 grandchildren, traveling and just being together.

The last time Pat and I visited Tom and Julie was the summer of 2013.  It was another great visit.  Jake’s last comment to me when I was in the car ready to pull away was “I want to see what you look like at 70”.  My response was “Right back at ya”.  To me the banter was more about the friendship continuing than what we may possibly look like at 70.  A saying that has good advice that is hard to follow “Don’t be sad that it’s over, be thankful that it happened”.  I am very thankful for the half century friendship with Jake and will always treasure the memories.

Pat and I visited Julie in the summer of 2015 and look forward to visiting with her during our stay in Billings this coming summer.

05/04/17 01:59 PM #2    

John Armstrong

Jake was a solid stand up guy that was fortunate enough to find the love of his life while at Senior High. He was solid in marriage, family, business, sports, and as a student to mention a few! I remember a couple of double dates with he and Julie that were nothing but fun. Jake was a sidekick and part of the Steve Janich - Tim Bergstrom stand up comedy team. Those guys continually would make me cry from laughing so hard. I can still see them walking down the halls and letting their comedy fly. It was an experience to behold and they had new material every day. Jake and Julie made one hell of a team in business and marriage. Rest in peace, my friend and my condolences to Julie, your friends, and family.

05/22/17 09:55 PM #3    

Dona Schlenker (Cranston)

With both of us living in Billings, I saw Tom quite a bit over the years - more after he opened Grand Bagel.  Both of my kids worked for Tom at GB while they were in high school.  Tom was there early every morning making bagels and he was so good to allow Libby and Connor to have the time off they needed for sports and school activities.  The thing that I remember most about Tom in high school was the day he wore the t-shirt to school (and keep in mind this was mid-60s) that said "F..... You" in a graffiti looking print so that it wasn't immediately identifiable - but by the end of the day, Mr. Kosich had figured it out - and home went Tom.  At his memorial get together Julie told me he still had that t-shirt.  I am sure I am not the only one that remembers that bold move by Tom - which would actually be a bold move to wear to high school even today. 

08/08/17 05:15 PM #4    

Dan Reno

Tom and Julie, a great couple.  Tom was a hard worker and a standup guy as John elated to.  Tom and Julie along with Barry Mettler and Susan all lived in the log cabins on Ave F or E right after we all graduated from high school.  Friday nights for a while was always a party at one or others houses.  While he owned Grand bagel I would see him there as lot and we would share some old times. Sharp guy and fun person.  RIP    

go to top 
  Post Comment