American Patriotic 10


Thomas Ochocki

July 14, 1943 ~ July 28, 2018 (age 75)
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Thomas E. Ochocki, PhD

LTC, US Army, Retired

Tom E. Ochocki, 75, West Fargo, ND died on Saturday, July 28, 2018 at his home.

Thomas was born to John and Loretta Ochocki on July 14, 1943 in Tyler, MN, the 5th of 8 children.  Tom started school in Ivanhoe Public School but spent his 6th grade year in a rural country school before going to Hendricks Public.  Tom graduated from Hendricks High School in 1961.

After graduating from high school, Tom joined the Army where he served in North Carolina and Germany.  Upon discharge, Tom worked in chemical research for General Mills until attending college at the University of Minnesota.  Tom received his BA in Psychology in 1970.  He received a MA in Psychology from the University of South Dakota in 1971 and a Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from the same institution in 1973.  Tom did his Post-Doctoral work in the Department of Pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Dr. Tom was appointed Chief Psychologist at the Faribault State Hospital. He also worked as a private practice psychologist in Faribault.  He served as a psychologist at the South Dakota Development Center from 1982 to 1999.  Then he became the Director of Training at ATCO (a community Developmental Disabilities Training Center) in Watertown.  Finally, Dr. Tom served as Chief Behavior Analyst in a facility for the Developmentally Disabled in Kentucky.  After his retirement, Dr. Tom received an appointment as an Assistant Professor at Presentation College in Aberdeen where he taught psychology and special education until the end of 2017. 

Tom married Loretta Gawarecki in 1966.  They had two children, Arron and Jason.  They divorced in 1981.  Tom married Sherry Vicker, and they have one child, Melissa Hope.  Tom and Sherry also lovingly cared for 23 foster children in the 1980s.

Tom received a direct commission to the rank of 1st Lieutenant in the Minnesota Army National Guard in 1975. After 5 years in the National Guard, Tom transferred to the U.S. Army Reserve where he served as Psychologist, Medical Company Commander, Command and General Staff Instructor, and finally, as Director of Medical Course for North and South Dakota. LTC Ochocki was called to active duty for Operation Desert Storm.  Tom retired from the military in 2003 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel after a combined 31 years of service. 

Dr. Tom is survived by his wife, Sherry, his three children, Aaron, Jason, and Hope, three treasured grandchildren, Alexa, Tobias, and  and Lucian, his 6 brothers, and his sister.



 Visitation: one hour prior to the service.


Funeral service: Monday, August 6, 2018 at 2 PM at Faith+ Journey Lutheran Church 2nd Ave Campus, West Fargo, ND.


Burial and Military Rites: Tuesday, August 7, 2018 at 1 PM at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery, Minneapolis, MN.                   


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