Thomas Charles Wheeler Jr. (62) of Idaho Falls, ID passed away December 18, 2022, surrounded by his family. Thomas was born in Saint Ignatius, Montana on November 29, 1960, to Thomas Charles Wheeler Sr. and Wilma Kay (Almendinger) Wheeler. Thomas quickly became a proud big brother to four younger siblings, and the family later moved to Tarkio, Montana. There, Thomas spent his childhood and adolescent years as a farm boy; milking cows, caring for animals, working the fields, and cultivating a work ethic rarely found in a person. On the farm, Thomas’ love of tinkering, inventing, and building took root. It was also in this time that Thomas met his best friend, and childhood sweetheart, Laurie Ann Brovold. Thomas and Laurie became forever inseparable. Upon graduating from Alberton High School, Thomas studied engineering at Montana State University in Bozeman. In 1984, he married Laurie; they started their family and eventually relocated to Idaho Falls, ID to raise their three girls. Thomas was a devoted father who relished every opportunity to embrace and support his girls’ interests; attending sporting events, concerts, plays and educational pursuits, and succeeded in his mission to raise strong, independent women. He was a loving and dedicated husband to Laurie, and together, the two of them created a life filled with love, patience, laughter, and the best example of true companionship. Thomas enjoyed a thirty-seven year-long career as a Registered Structural Mechanical Engineer, the majority of which was spent working for the Idaho National Laboratory. He was passionate about his work and a natural mentor to those around him. Thomas was most at home in the great outdoors or working on his many projects. With Laurie by his side, the two adventured through twenty-four National Parks, collaborated on custom woodworking projects, and shared in a passion for astronomy. Thomas was a proud Dad to his three girls, Nikki (Tom Shelly), Kelly (Jakob Cottrell), and Ashley (Ben Shockley), and a proud Papa to grandkids Sawyer (Cottrell), Hazel (Shelly) and Felix (Shelly). Thomas will forever be loved and missed beyond words, and his legacy will live on through his family that he loved so fiercely.