Tom was born in 1933 in Wichita, Kansas to Winifred J. Watson and Earl K. Carey. His early years were spent in McPherson Kansas with his beloved siblings Jack, Cathy and Marty before moving to Denver in 1945. He attended East High School (1951) where he was Head Boy, excelled academically, and received accolades on the wrestling mat as well All-State honors on the football field and in track.
Tom graduated from Harvard University (1955) and Harvard Medical School (1959). He completed an internal medicine internship and one year of radiology residency in Boston before returning to Colorado to pursue surgical residencies at the University of Colorado. During his surgical residencies, Dr. Carey served as a Lieutenant in the United States Naval Reserve seeing active duty as General Medical Officer on the USS Calvert, APA-32, Pacific Amphibious Fleet, San Diego (1962-64).
Tom completed General and Cardiac Surgical Residencies at the CU Health Sciences Center (1961-69). He also pursued a Transplant Residency under Dr. Starzal (1965), spent three months as a volunteer surgeon at Da Nang Civilian Hospital in Vietnam (1969) and was the Cardiac Surgery Chief Resident.
During his residency, Tom met and married Ann, his treasured wife of 55 years. In 1970, he founded the Arapahoe Cardiovascular Surgical Group and co-founded the Cardiac Surgery Program at Porter Memorial Hospital.
Tom retired from surgery (1988) to work as Director of Medical Affairs at Porter Hospital. He obtained his MHA from CU Denver (1990) and worked as both a consultant in Quality Assurance/Medical Staff Affairs and to develop The Center for Personalized Education for Physicians (CPEP), a non-profit organization specializing in physician competency assessment and educational intervention, before becoming the Medical Director of the Arapahoe Medical Society (1992).
After retiring in the mid-1990s, Tom pursued many other passions including: studying Eastern mysticism & Jungian psychology, building a beautiful home in Greenwood Village, organizing East High School reunions, serving as President of the HOA and President of the Board of Directors of Families First, reading, going to movies, dining/enjoying fine wine with friends, cheering on Colorado sports teams – most passionately for the Broncos and Buffs - and travelling the world. Travel highlights included Tom and Ann’s trip to Nepal/Tibet, hosting friends and family at his beloved Borgo di Montemigiano property in Umbria, Italy and watching his Broncos’ thrilling Super Bowl XXXII victory in San Diego.
Tom was an active outdoorsman. He cherished time spent at the Carey family ranch riding horses and hiking, twice skiing the Haute Route in the Alps, rafting the Colorado and Green Rivers, and biking Vail Pass and through northern Italy.
Tom was above all a steadfast friend and devoted family man. He adored his daughters, Katie and Andrea and relished his role as Papa to Karen and Thomas. He deeply impacted countless lives and will be greatly missed.
Memorial Gifts may be made in honor of Tom to the Dumb Friends League or a charity of your choice.
Services will be live-streamed. Please join with this link: https://event.forgetmenotceremonies.com/ceremony?c=474fb5ae-133c-4d9d-9432-7c41c0694dd0